Had coffee with a friend today. We sat and talked for a couple of hours. I haven't spent much time alone with her before--we were really more acquaintances. I think I've known her now for 2-3 years. We've been in groups where the topic of religion or spirituality have come up, but I've not really talked with her directly about it before.
So today, somewhat out of the blue, she started asking me how I reconcile my spirituality or my faith with the rest of my life. We got to talk for several hours about faith and barriers to faith. I was able to share how I've worked through some of those in my own life.
How did that happen? I don't think there's some magic formula or anything. But I can tell you that I've been investing in her and in the people around her for a very long time. I've had numerous conversations about a lot of different things - some serious, some fun. I've been around, loving her and her friend. I've been living consistently (though not perfectly) in a way that can be observed.
And now, I've been talking about my book. It's been sort of a catalyst to talking about the place that faith has in my life. I've been investing in people for years without having a natural way to bring up spiritual conversations. It will be interesting to see whether this happens more. It was actually the 2nd time this week that I had a spiritual conversation with a person this week who I've been investing in but not really having spiritual conversations with.
As you can see, I'm still figuring this out. There are times when I say the wrong thing or go too far. There may be some times when I don't say things and I should. But I don't think that you can go wrong by loving and investing in people as people.