About Me

Van Walton

Fun Facts about Van Walton

My favorite smell: The way the earth smells after it rains.

My favorite sound: The first notes of a grand symphony.

My favorite way to relax: Sitting anywhere outside - on my front porch, on my deck, or by the lake, early in the morning with my first cup of coffee.

My favorite birthday dessert: a Peach cobbler baked by my husband. He’s my fave chef!

I will not eat: Avocado. They turn my stomach into a volcano that never erupts.

Technology I couldn't live without and why: My laptop - it takes me anywhere I want to go.

One thing that makes me smile: My sons' faces!

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My Resources



My book, From the Pound to the Palace, is available for $10
from Proverbs 31 Ministries.


Pound to Palace


My book, Little Halos, is available for $5.99 from Proverbs
31 Ministries.


Little Halos


Proverbs 31 Ministries












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Monday, May 5, 2008

MOVIN' ON AFTER MOVIN' IN MONDAY

Who Are My Neighbors?

Why am I here? I drive into my neighborhood. Do I wave at the neighbors on the street? I press the garage door opener and my car rolls into the garage? Do I close the door behind me or walk outside to say hello? What have I done to become acquainted? I wish my neighbors would come knocking to introduce themselves. At some point I will have to get beyond my insecurities, reaching out to them. How do I get to know them?

At the bus stop? On the sidewalk while taking my daily stroll? Out in the street while we watch our children play? How can I get to know my neighbors?

I was once delighted by a neighbor who brought me an entire meal the day I moved in. Gina’s hospitality brightened my day. Her thoughtfulness and generosity lifted my spirits. Months later when Diane moved in across the street I did the same for her. One kind act created a community of purpose. We built a “family” up and down our street.

Another time, when I realized no one was going to reach out to me like Gina had, I invited my neighbors to my house for coffee and doughnuts. We had such a good time-we developed a monthly gathering.

Reaching out requires creativity and boldness. If I do not know those around me, it is hard to entertain them. I have made it a point to take walks so I could meet my neighbors. I comment on their child or their dog and conversations begin. I have stopped to chat with neighbors working in yards and asked questions that would help me in my new garden. I have brought my children out to the sidewalk to play with other little ones. Exchanging phone numbers has allowed me to call and ask another mother to go to the park. From a tiny get together play groups have developed. Having some one’s number has made it possible for me to ask for help hanging curtains, moving furniture, or choosing paint for the living room. From these brief encounters trust has developed and friendships have grown.

One more thing – while visiting with your new neighbors, ask them to recommend a church. Even if they don’t regularly attend a church, you can begin an interesting and possibly eternal conversation.

Why am I here? Maybe it is not about me.
Maybe it is about my neighbor who needs me!

6 comments:

Laura said...

You always have such wise words to share! I'm so glad you are doing this series. It helps me with my friend who has just moved. It is a big adjustment. Especially for the little ones. They do so much better when mommy is happy!
I'm counting down to shespeaks!
laura

elaine @ peace for the journey said...

Van...
I've been in this position too many times to count. Fortunately, I've never had trouble finding my voice in conversation. It's the "moving beyond" conversation into relationship that brings me pause. I suppose I've moved so much, I have a hard time developing the "want to" to form relationships. It's a discipline...an obedience that has always pays huge dividends, but sometimes I grow weary with the doing.

I know that others are hungering for deep relationship,also. I don't mind making the first move for relationship, it's just the second and third moves that I wish I didn't always have to make. I'd like for someone to take the time to pursue me. Does that make sense?

Thanks for sharing~elaine

Shanda said...

In my new neighborhood, the families are very welcoming. With beautiful weather they all come out and play together! Totally different from where I came from. I love that we are here for others but I echo Elaine in that especially as a women you long for someone to reach out to you as well... a confirmation that you are needed, wanted. I'm searching for them all right now. Friends to grow with, someone to teach me, and someone I can take by the hand and show them where I've been and what I've learned. Starting from scratch is tough, but well worth it like you said. I will be sure to get out an enjoy the sunshine and say "hello" to my neighbors today! Thanks, Van!
shanda

Digging for Pearls said...

Just wanted to wish you Happy Mother's Day.

Blessings,
Pearls

elaine @ peace for the journey said...

Van:
I've included your blog amongst my "blogs for the journey" on my sidebar. If that's not OK with you, let me know and I will remove it post-haste!

Happy Thursday and Happy Mother's Day.

peace~elaine

Karen Ehman-The Keep it Simple Woman said...

Sweet Van--- Praying for you and trusting God to do an awesome work in your life during this time. You are such an inspiration and example of a godly woman and I am blessed to know you!!! Hang in there and Happy Mother's Day!!!!!
Karen