God Connections

I’m at ONE‘s holiday party tonight. I’ve been talking to them more, and had a really good meeting with their youth organizer to explore some ways that the church and I can be more involved in youth issues in the neighborhood. Because our church is becoming a member of ONE, our congregation was invited to their party.

My problem? I don’t really know anybody here, and I suck at networking if I’m not being introduced. I’ve already chatted with my new friend from Senn HS (who I met at the youth-police dinner last week), the couple of staff workers from Howard Area Community Center that I sort of know, and the couple of people that ONE’s youth organizer thought it was important for me to meet.

Well, that’s about it for me, I think to myself… I’ll finish my drink, say bye to a couple of people, and start walking the 9 blocks home.

As I move to throw my cup away, an attractive young lady who just arrived walks past me, and we give a polite smile to each other. As we pass, though, I sense her stopping and turning back to me. “Hey.. you look familiar… I think we’ve met before!”

I look back at her, not recognizing her at all. “Really? I’m sorry for that.” It’s better to apologize before you get accused of anything, I always say!

As I turned back to her, however, she noticed my black hoodie, and even though my nametag covers up the wording, the three crosses are pretty recognizable. “Oh, you’re from InnerCHANGE!” she exclaims.

Still, I have no idea who she is. “Ok, that’s just a little scary…” But really, if she knows InnerCHANGE, how bad can she be?

Turns out I’m talking to the Educational Ministries Director at Emmaus Ministries, who previously spent 4 years working with InnerCHANGE in LA. Although I’d forgotten, we’d met briefly a couple months ago at a “Black Hoodie Dinner” (eh, an InnerCHANGE gathering) in Wheaton. This girl apparently has an amazing memory for faces, because she remembered me from an InnerCHANGE conference when I interned with them a couple years ago. Oy.

Anyway, we spent quite a long time talking about my church and youth group, her work with Emmaus, and God’s amazing coordination at putting both of us in our positions (her predecessor, a friend of hers from high school, traded places with her, basically… she came from InnerCHANGE to Emmaus, while her friend/predecessor went from Emmaus to work with InnerCHANGE in Venezuela). Of course, we also talked about working with InnerCHANGE and shared connections in San Francisco, London, and Romania. There’s also a possibility of shooting her wedding in June.

Anyway, I was sad no one else from my church came tonight, and it was a little weird not knowing many people… but it was still totally worth going.

My belovedness today is probably an 8-9 out of 10. It’s a good day today.

~ by Peter on December 10, 2007.

2 Responses to “God Connections”

  1. Peter, networking can be really crappy. I actually hate going to things that involve it. It feels odd, like we all have an agenda to meet.

    The other day I went to a Thanksgiving dinner at our local HS, only it was during the day… during the students lunch hour in the cafeteria. They even made sure to tell students to come over and talk to us. They wanted us to mingle with the other adults there to “network”. It killed me. Here I am eating this nice meal when students I’m trying to minister to who are eating food not as good as what they serve us and some who really see that meal as about the only stable food they get. It was all I could do to leave. I am no better then they are and was put into that situation.

    I hate networking.

    I do like to meet people when we don’t have an agenda though.

  2. hmmm. i like when God does things like that. networks for us, as it were. (i once had a wise mentor say that the best way to network is to pray.) and it made me smile that the person you ran into used to be my roommate. at least i’m pretty sure of that .. and the other details seem to fit. i like it when two people i enjoy meet each other.

    thanks for blogging. you write things that are good to hear .. and in a format that is easy on the soul.

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