It’s not enough to talk about community. It’s not enough to quickly wave hello to your neighbors, then hustle into the safety of your home (though we all do it). Real community happens when you ask and answer honest questions. It happens when you console someone, lift someone up, or find a solution to a problem that has been nagging them for days, weeks, years. That’s where real relationships develop.
These friend-to-friend, coworker-to-coworker, family member-to-family member ties are critical. They comprise America. Imagine a big map, with little strings connecting people. Some would go from house to house in the neighborhood where I grew up. Some would stretch all the way across the country connecting friends and family members who have moved far away from home.
In each instance, that connection is unique. But there are surely some constants.
– A willingness to listen
– A penchant for working together
– A search for common ground
– A goal to enrich the lives of those you love
Since her announcement, Hillary Clinton has showed that she, too, understands the importance of community. With only a few staff and the necessary Secret Service, Hillary hopped in a van and drove across the country from New York to Iowa. Once there, she spent time with small groups of Iowans, hoping to get to know them, specifically what’s nagging them and what they need help fixing.
How good and pleasant it is when we join together. I sense a stronger community in the making.
Jessica Church is a faithful Democrat living and working in Washington, DC. You can reach Jessica on twitter at @j_r_church or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.