[You should meet together]
It’s that time of year again. I don’t know about you, but for me, a brand new year means it’s time to look at the days ahead with some hope and motivation.
Getting through the Winter months isn’t always easy, especially if you struggle with S.A.D. (Seasonal Affective Disorder.) With a cold snap, also comes the desire to hibernate, but since I prefer to keep moving, I want to take last years “Trek On” message and expand on what I wrote.
Last year’s motivation was taken from a Joshua Micah song called “Who Says?” One of the lines that really spoke to me was this line: “Who says you’ll never feel alone in the crowd?”
At times, I have felt alone in the crowd whether it was because I felt that I didn’t share the same thoughts or heart as others or because I can simply be quite introverted. This just means that quite a bit of the time I naturally prefer to listen and think. In other words, most people know me to be on the quiet side. My closest friends, however, know that I can also be a jabber pot when the mood strikes. While I’ve come to accept my layers, I also feel that it’s not such a bad thing to challenge my comfort zone.
It’s okay to feel alone in the crowd. Depending on the crowd, sometimes this is even a good thing. However, being a part of a crowd (particularly having your own close knit community that you can depend on) has its benefits. If you’re wondering how “Where’s Waddles?” fits into this post you’re about to find out!
Emperor penguins are a very communal bunch. They have to be. When temperatures plummet, emperor penguins must huddle together for warmth; it’s a matter of survival.
We too need that warmth in a world that can leave us feeling cold. When we come together we can encourage and spur one another on. This can, and does, warm our hearts which helps us to keep trekking on, but we have to show up!
Here’s something that’s quite interesting about Penguin huddles: they’re not static. A penguin huddle is constantly shifting and moving. Even in those very frigid temperatures a huddle can cause penguins to overheat. Therefore, those in the center of things have to sometimes make their way out of the huddle to cool off. We too may need to break free from the huddle for a breath of fresh air, but then we have to get back to the crowd once again for warmth. Don’t bury your head in the snow for too long.
I chose “Where’s Waddles?” as the title for this post because as I was watching a nature show with Andrew, the image of a penguin huddle sparked the thought of one of those “Where’s Waldo?” pictures. The thing is, sometimes we can get a bit lost in the crowd, but other times we simply choose to forego the crowd altogether. If you’re willing, however, challenging yourself can make a world of difference. It’s detrimental to remain static. If we don’t keep moving we too can either grow cold or over heat.
If you’re feeling lost in the crowd, check out last year’s post Trek On for your pep talk. If you’re the one missing from the crowd, make 2019 a year to seek out a supportive and friendly community.
Being that church is made up imperfect people, don’t be so quick to judge. After all, we’re all still a work in progress. A church family is meant to be that positive support where real people, with real challenges can encourage and pray for one another. Friends and family can also add to that warmth. To keep moving we have to kick those old habits and discouraging thoughts to the berg. All they really do is freeze us in place.
“Let us hold firmly to the hope that we have confessed, because we can trust God to do what He promised. Let us think about each other and help each other to show love and do good deeds. You should not stay away from the church meetings, as some are doing, but you should meet together and encourage each other. Do this even more as you see the day coming.” –Hebrews 10:23-25