Last week before I went on vacation I was in Love Park in that blistering heat that Philly was suffering through. Kids were playing in the fountain and tons of people were still stopping by the LOVE statue to snap a photo. Here’s a photo of photo taking. Even in the disgusting heat I couldn’t help but be content in my city of brotherly love. When I went to live in Mexico for a year between my sophomore and junior years of college I was advised to take gifts to my host families that represented my culture. I was so glad when I realized I could give them a little replica of the LOVE statue instead of the Liberty Bell. The Liberty Bell was too patriotic even though it was very Philly. Being known for love is pretty cool.
I was at Love Park that Thursday at noon because we were creating missional space. We meet in Love Park every Thursday at noon to see if there is anyone we need to meet, and to practice our connecting skills. My friends and I were looking around at those braving the heat and wondering how we might make friends (something I am often doing now). Just then a woman walked into the park who I “knew” from my morning disciplines on Broad Street.
A few mornings a week I stand in front of Circle of Hope’s building at 1125 S. Broad Street and I say good morning to those walking up and down the street, and I pray. I had said good morning to this woman for several weeks. She was one of the people who did not ignore me. I asked my friends if that was enough reason to go and talk to her. They said, “What’s the worst that could happen?” I agreed and I went up and talked to her. It turned out we had some mutual acquaintances and she lived around the corner from Circle of Hope’s meeting space. She might be interested in checking out one of our Public Meetings and she gave me some contact information.
I was excited by how my two very random exercises, standing on Broad Street and hanging out in Love Park, coalesced and I made a new friend. I see God at work in that. I pray that God continues to work though me both randomly as he did in this instance, and more according to plan as I hone my church planting strategy to focus my efforts.