Time has completely flown by without any regard of my preference lately. Here in Hunting Park the flowers have been blossoming, car stereo’s loud, cookout smells in the air and the neighborhood very energetic. Summer is almost here and it makes me happy. I love the warm weather!
With that being said, its hard to ignore the inevitable end that is getting closer and closer day by day. My time here in Philadelphia has been life changing, eye opening and renewing in many ways that can’t all be stated in one letter. One aspect of Mission Year I did not realize was so big was intentional community.
- done on purpose; deliberate.
Never hearing the phrase “intentional community” prior to Mission Year then coming and living it for a whole year has been extremely difficult. I want to express that through all the difficulty, very much healing, growth, REAL friendships and life has come from it all. So much more has come from it but it’s a lot to put into words. There’s just something about knowing someones every flaw, struggle and problems and loving them through them with no judgment.
Some may say the things I’ve learned here in Mission Year could just be called “life skills” but ironically the things I’ve been learning here are not common practice. It was pretty surprising to me how many people, including myself, don’t know how to deal with conflict/difficult conversations properly, let alone HAVE the conversations. I’ve really realized what it means to truly care for someone and that caring for that relationship with them means fighting for it through the good and bad.
I don’t enjoy having difficult conversations, but having someone call out my flaws out of pure love and desire for growth in myself and our relationship is something special. Let it be known that many people and relationships I’ve had in the past have never made it past surface level but that’s definitely changing. I now realize I come alive in times of chaos, confusion, and conflict. It seems to bring out the best me, the loving, gentle and caring person God made me to be.
I’ll leave you with these questions today; Are the relationships you currently have worth fighting for? Are you willing to have hard conversations to keep it alive, rich, real and full of intentionality?
Colin Claud is a current Hunting Park, Philly Mission Year team member. He is originally from St. Charles, IL. Support him and learn more by visiting his donation page.