Hang Loose, Bro.

So I’ve been spending my winter break on vacation in Hawaii.  The weather is great, the food is yummy, and the people are so laid back.  I was talking to one of my cousins and he was rather fascinated with the fact that I was from Texas.  He began firing question at me one by one.  Things like: What is Texas like?  Do you own Cowboy boots?  Is DFW a lot different than Abilene?  How are the people there?  What do you do on a daily basis?  I began to asnwer his questions, surprised by how little he really knew about Texas.  You see, to me, it was second nature.  Life in Texas is like life anywhere else, just a little warmer duing the summer and colder during the winters.

I began to fire back questions echoing what he had just asked.  When he started answer the question, “What is life like in Hawaii?” He paused. How hard of a question is that?  I mean, life in Hawaii was probably the same as life anywhere else.  It’s LIFE, theres just a common medium when we talk about that stuff, right?  WRONG.  He replied with, “You people in the big cities are constantly on a schedule…” I interrupted him, trying to defend myself (I’m not sure why because he wasn’t attacking me or anything), “I am not a schedule all the time! None different than you, we both get up and go to class then make plans for that evening or whatever!  Everyone is on a schedule.” He looked at me and laughed.  His response was, “No, I understand that, but the difference between our states is that in Texas, you run around constantly busy, no time to relax, always on the go… or at least the average person is, right?” I nodded, because it was true.  “You see, Leanne, here, people may have their schedules with work and school, but between that we just grab a beer and sit and chat with whoever is next to us.  Maybe we go to the beach, get together with friends, but it’s not really preplanned, it’s more of a laid-back-if-you-don’t-go-i’m-still-going kind of thing.”  I didn’t feel like arguing about how Texas is better (pride issue…) so I nodded and left the table.

The more I think about it, the more it’s true.  People here may be busy with work and church, but after that they simply fellowship.  Litterally every person is nice.  They will just strike up a conversation and talk to you like you’ve known them for years.  People serve each other whether they have a realtionship with each other or not.  Just today some guy got out of his car and helped us back up out of a parking stall because the space was tight!  He generously took 30 seconds out of his day to help someone out.  Yes, that may happen in Texas or California, or wherever you might be, but something about the community here is just different.

It made me think.  What kind of schedule am I constantly on?  School from 8am-3pm, church meeting, church service, lifegroup, art project, prayer meeting, accountability groups, etc.  It’s great to be doing all that, but in between I also schedule my dinner time, when I’m going to hangout with people and who I’m going to be with etc.  How crazy?! I’m so set on a schedule that anything that might offset it is immediately ignored.  To step out of the way to help someone is not on the schedule.  Yes, I might open a door or pick something up for someone, but generally, I’m so self-absorbed in my own life and time that I miss so many opportunitiies to fellowship and serve others.

Maybe you guys are reading this thinking I’m crazy and that there is no substince here, but I really believe that in my world I’ve been relient on schedules that I don’t rely on God with my time.  I manage my own time, get things done, and repeat.  Doing this minimizes my opporunity to serve others therefore I don’t allow myself to depend on God because I know if I get off track for a minute, I will have messed up my own schedule.

It’s not about us.  Don’t forget God is on our side.

Now check out some pics from Hawaii!  How glorious is God’s creation!?!?!