Can I make a caveat right at the get go here?

I am not a “Top Ten Tips” sort of person (well maybe Top Six Tips).  I prefer to ask questions, tell you a story; but, not really into Bullet Points toward Success.  That being said, I made this list for my church women’s retreat and thought sharing it here (with some tweaks) would be useful for you.

Making Connections

In the Genesis account of creation, we encounter a deeply relational God calling life into being; while, making earth his palace, and us his palace temple.  

As Jesus desires to know us and for us to know him, so he also desires for us to be known by one another.  Whether an introvert or extrovert, this task of being known can feel daunting as we make ourselves vulnerable to someone else. What if they don’t like me?  What if I say the wrong thing like before?  What if I struggle with conversing?  What if I’ve been burned before by opening up?  

All of these are real struggles.  Ones I don’t want to undermine.  However, can I gently nudge us toward awkward conversations rich in grace and dripping with redemptive honey?  Can I offer some ideas of connecting with other women in your every day lives, so that we would be women marked by love & empowered by the Holy Spirit to step forth in that love?

SIX TIPS_KAMILLE_GT

1. Meals

Inviting a person(s) to your home to share a meal, or out to lunch or coffee, is a simple way to welcome them into your life.  I find offering food & drink breaks down walls and provides an open conversation to occur.  I once heard of a diplomat who would never meet with other diplomats, dignitaries, etc to discuss anything without the presence of a meal.  He said by serving food, it created a conversation, a discussion.  I like to think it created space for hospitality in a hostile world.

2. Kind Card (or text)

Maybe there’s someone you don’t know that well and you’re not sure about inviting them over.  A non-intimidating way is sending them a card in the mail, an email of encouragement, or a text letting them know you are thankful for them & praying for them.  The same applies for those you know well. I have found when a specific person is pressed upon my heart & mind, it’s the Holy Spirit’s way of telling me to pray & reach out to them.  

3. Warm Hello

I find on Sunday mornings within my church body to be a great opportunity to make connections.  There might be a person you’ve been wanting to meet; but, maybe you’re nervous & shy as to what their reaction would be.  I encourage you to step up the courage and walk right over to say hello.  Introduce yourself, and let them know you’ve wanted to meet them.  For example, “Hi, my name is Kamille.  I wanted to meet you and thought I should just come and introduce myself.  So here I am.”  

It may feel a bit awkward; but, most likely you will have made them feel wanted & loved by your bold act of stepping out with a warm hello.  This warm hello applies even to people you know, or are getting to know.

4. Start an Interest Group

If you love to knit, find out other women who love to knit and start a knitting gathering.  If you love to explore outdoors through hiking or snowshoeing, then send out an open invitation to join you.  I have found doing the thing you love, learning from or teaching others about this passion is a natural bridge to building community and connectedness.

5. The Ministry of Using Our Hands Together

I fondly remember mentoring other women in college, where we could easily talk forever and share our heart stories.  However, the very thought of sitting across from someone sharing your life makes you squeamish.  What I have always found to hold more weight is when I am working alongside someone with my hands.  

Inviting someone into my home to cook a meal, or anything using my hands to accomplish the work provides natural conversation. It creates pauses, without the feeling like one needs to carry the conversation or talk the whole time.  It is through this ministering side by side where we not only minister to the recipient of our work; but, we minister to one another by hearing and telling our story.

6.  Sharing Your Story

I believe one of Satan’s biggest tactics against us is shaming us. We feel ashamed, because we think we are the only ones who are struggling with (insert issue).  As an extroverted, opinionated woman, I can easily begin to think my introverted, more quiet sisters never struggle and are therefore more holy. Crazy right?!  What I have come to know is how Satan likes to use this shame, to use these words we tell ourselves about our story to further isolate us and prevent us from sharing.

My Hope for Grace Table & You

My hope for us at Grace Table is to create a space for you to share your story with other women in your real life community. Through sharing our story, our struggles, we are making room for the other to feel normal, to feel human. When we make another person feel human, we are opening the veil to see the imago dei in them.

 

Can you think of ways you have connected with people in your real life?  

 

Kamille Scellick / Posts / Blog

Kamille Scellick passionately believes that gathering around the table is where the body, mind & soul will be nourished. It’s around the table where you’re sure to find her on any given day…eating, talking, listening & sharing life with her husband, Ben & three girls. She believes in life-giving hospitality Jesus style and sees his redemption being offered through it. Her greatest achievement is knowing she is extending this hospitality first & foremost to her family and then to others. You can find her sharing stories, hospitality, food and life with friend & stranger at her blog, Redeeming the Table. There’s a seat for you at her table to find home.

  • Marian Vischer
    http://www.marianvischer.com

    Kamille, this is so helpful and encouraging. My favorite is the idea of working alongside one another with our hands. It feels extra non-threatening and natural.

    May 2nd, 2016 7:12
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    • Kamille Scellick
      http://www.redeemingthetable.com/

      Marian,

      I’m so glad you’re here, and thankful for you. I think you’re right about it feeling non-threatening & natural. There are so many stories throughout history of women knowing one another, doing life because they are washing their laundry together, or cooking, or nursing their babies together. Keep doing what you’re doing.

      Kamille

      May 3rd, 2016 9:26
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      02
  • Michele Morin
    http://michelemorin.wordpress.com

    I find that a cup of tea is a warm way to connect.
    Something about the steaming brew, waiting for it to cool, sipping and chatting.

    May 2nd, 2016 9:30
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    • Kamille Scellick
      http://www.redeemingthetable.com/

      Hi Michele,

      Yes a warm cup of tea or coffee helps break the ice, and creates pauses.
      thank you for saying so,

      Kamille

      May 3rd, 2016 9:27
      Reply
      04
  • Jody Collins
    Jody Collins
    http://threewaylight.blogspot.com/

    We were just discussing this on Saturday in our Women’s Team meeting. Wow, so timely. Our discussion was around the deluge of this technical age that threatens to do us in with ‘noiseless friendships’ vs. the total touch we so desperately desire–God-wired into us.

    How do I generate in real life connections? Be intentional about meeting one or two women for coffee, sometimes dinner. Sending cards or notes (I’ve learned about those ‘just-so-happen’ stances from the Holy Spirit, too!)
    Even tho’ I blog and have friendships online, the deepest ones are with the women I’ve spent time with face to face.
    Great discussion–thanks for making your list, Kamille.

    May 2nd, 2016 23:37
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    • Kamille Scellick
      http://www.redeemingthetable.com/

      Jody

      I so appreciate you and your heart. I found myself smiling the whole time reading your response. My in real life friendships could never be replaced. Love to you.

      Kamille

      May 3rd, 2016 9:29
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