Why Dinner Tables Matter.

Intermissionary - Dinner

Several years ago, when I first started working for Mercy Ships, someone I barely knew walked up to me and said something so accurate and so prescient that for a minute I thought he was a ghost. ⠀

On that day, I began learning how to let people into my life, to trust their insight and desire to see me succeed.⠀

I wanted to do the same thing for other people. To encourage them, to see them and treat them, as Goethe said, as if they already were what they could be. So I learned from him and others. ⠀

So we practiced. About seven of us, all women, around my dinner table once a month. We called it Love Dinner. Four years, a hundred wine bottles and zillion candles later, I have women in my life who know me. They are allowed to hold up mirrors in my face when I am lying to myself because they love me and they treat me as if I already am, what I can be. ⠀

In the past month, two of them have flown the coop. They’re off to chase dreams God put inside them; dreams that we, their people, helped birth. It is so fun and it is so painful. I cried when I asked Ashley if I could pray for her the night before she left for Zambia. ⠀

“It’s not ending,” she said. “Look at Girl Catch Fire. Look at what you’re doing in France. It’s just the next step for all of us.”⠀

She’s right.⠀

Dinner tables are where the magic happens. It’s where we learn to trust each other enough to fling open long-shuttered doors, to let the light in. ⠀

That is what I want for myself. It is what I want for you. It is the heart of Intermissionary.