I enjoy a cup of joe like the rest; however, I don’t consider myself a coffee snob. Actually, I will drink just about any kind of coffee, especially when it means I’m with friends or family. When a friend asks me to go get coffee with her, I know it’s not the particular kind of coffee blend we will be discussing! Nor will it be the aroma of that particular cup. No, usually, when a friend asks me to get coffee with her, it’s to connect with her on a much deeper level than our everyday lives allow. Oh, we will exchange superficial information about what’s going on for a little while, but then we will go deeper into the emotions behind the details of what’s going on in their lives. I like to get to know people.
“How does she feel knowing her son lied to her?”
“How did she take the news that her Dad’s Alzheimer’s is worse and that he didn’t even remember her name?”
“Is she afraid she will lose her job because because her son is sick … again and she had to miss work?”
These kinds of probing questions will penetrate the “have-it-all-together” facade in order to really connect and communicate with someone. There is much more than words being exchanged: There are tears! There’s laughter! There’s confusion and joy!
I am not the best friend sometimes, but I really try to make people feel valued, significant and known.
Not to bash men, but I really don’t think they get it! It’s just not how God made them. One night while I was still living at my parents’ house, I was busy in my room getting ready for the next day. My Dad asked me if I wanted some coffee. I was really looking forward to spending some quality time with my Dad, and I was thrilled that he wanted to spend some time with me, too. So I quickly finished up what I was doing and went to the kitchen. There sat my cup of coffee my dad had made me. The rest of the house was dark except the light above the kitchen sink. Everyone had gone to bed–including my dad!
My heart was deflated! The next day I asked him about it. His response was, “I asked if you wanted some coffee; so, I put a pot of coffee on for you and went to bed!” LOL! (“Building Three” coffee shop is a great place in Colorado Springs to have coffee and conversation! My husband and I go there a lot!)
That was the day I knew men and women are wired differently. Women are wired for relationship, face-to-face interaction with one another more than men are! If my dad knew that’s what “a cup of coffee” meant to me, I have no doubt he would have stayed up with me and chatted for a bit before he went to bed.
In the past women would do this kind of communicating while they were hanging laundry out to dry. They would talk to one another over the fence posts. They were there for one another — during the good times and the bad! If you had neighbors, they were automatically your lifelong friends! People didn’t usually move from one community to the other that often. Women exhcanged recipes and heartbreaking news of an loved one’s illness! They were there for each other when babies were born. They were there for each other when babies were buried. The women formed warm bonds of lasting friendship in order to survive the threat of cold, harsh winters!
It’s ironic to me that we have the most advances in communication devices: cell phones, chat rooms, Skype, text messaging, etc., but we really don’t communicate — at least not on a meaningful level! We need to learn to be “community” again! We need to learn the art of friendship! We need to be intentional and make room for what truly matters. The best gift we can give someone is our time! It’s priceless!
Tell me what it looks like for you to have meaningful conversation! Is there coffee involved? Are you purposeful about connecting with others?