A Simple Hello…
Posted on December 20, 2018 | Posted by Mary Stoneback
A few weeks ago, I met a gentleman at a coffee shop and in the course of conversation learned we had somethings in common, including a connection to Mosaic. Mosaic is a faith-based organization serving people with intellectual disabilities. On Monday mornings at Ascension, the non-profit uses our fellowship hall and basement for crafts and cooking. As it turned out, he had recently started to work for Mosaic. I learned the organization seeks to connect those they serve to the community as much as possible. One of the main reasons for doing so is to provide the individuals opportunities to connect with as many natural supports as possible. As my friend explained it, natural supports could be a janitor at the building, or a secretary at a church who greets the group upon entering a building. A natural support is anyone who is not paid to care and connect with the members.
As it turns out, the staff keep track of these interactions. Why? They matter. A simple hello, a wave to acknowledge another’s presence…these acts matter. It’s not like I didn’t know this, yet, in my day-to-day rush to check off the ‘to do’ boxes and sprint to the next meeting, I consistently ran past an opportunity to be a natural support for the group. So this past Monday, I intentionally stopped and asked the group about their craft for the day. A lady jumped up and showed me the Christmas ornament she had made, and then asked me to write my name on a piece of paper. After doing so, she took my picture and I said goodbye. As I got into my car to leave, however, I realized I had not learned her name. Turning off the car, I went back into the church and asked for her name. She eagerly wrote her name, Debbie, on a carefully picked piece of green paper and exclaimed, “now we know each other!”
Now it mattered to us both. A simple hello was all God needed to remind me that we walk this life together, each made to be natural supports for one another.
Dear God, we ask for healthy, thriving relationships between neighbors. We pray that the diversity of your people will be celebrated by all neighbors, just as you affirm and love each one of us. Amen.
~Deacon Mary Stoneback