Thursday Evenings and the Kingdom of Heaven

21 01 2011

Every Thursday evening several people from our neighborhood gather together to eat food, tell stories, play games, and laugh together. There are frequently games of Uno, Apples to Apples, and Hide and Seek (which includes lots of squealing and screaming!). The food can range from homemade pizzas to chili to pork chops (and there are always lots of veggies) – and whenever anyone has a birthday there is ice cream and cake. There seems to be nonstop laughter and giggling on Thursday evenings… but sometimes somebody needs to cry too. Typically we all try to embrace life as it happens – the ups and the downs; the twists and turns; the times we like each other and the times we can’t stand to be around each other.

These neighborhood gatherings sometimes occur in our trailer, and at other times in my fiancee and her roommate’s trailer… some Thursdays we’ll start in one and move to the other. Last night we happened to be meeting in our trailer.

At one point, feeling quite cramped, I decided to count the number of people present. There were nineteen of us – five adults and fourteen kids (ranging from elementary to high school). Out of those nineteen people, eight (four adults and four kids) live in the trailer park. Eleven came from outside of the trailer park.

Nineteen people in a small trailer makes for cramped spaces and a loud evening (just imagine middle school girls around teenage boys – “giggling and screaming” doesn’t even begin to paint a picture). After a while several of the kids went to the other trailer to play games, and several others decided to go outside for a bit. …a result of this mass exodus was that our trailer was down to three adults and four kids. …and it was MUCH quieter. The quietness was almost eerie. There were lots of jokes about the silence being like heaven.

I made the joke, “And Jesus said, ‘The Kingdom of Heaven is like a trailer that a bunch of loud kids just left…'” But it was just a joke. Because the truth is, the Kingdom of Heaven is probably a lot like a trailer packed full of loud and giggling and screaming neighbors… many of which aren’t neighbors that live in the neighborhood. I’m blessed to be a part of something as amazing as the weekly neighborhood gatherings on Thursdays. I love my neighborhood. I love my neighbors.




One response

30 01 2011

That’s a fantastic picture and I completely agree. Thanks for sharing.

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