Deep within all of us there is a longing for relationship, connectivity, and a sense of belonging. It’s no wonder social media impacts the lives of an enormous number of people each and every day. Many of these social media platforms can have horribly negative effects on our daily lives, but that’s not the purpose of this post. This post, however, documents the positive and tangible effects of personal, face-to-face interaction with people which we are purposefully hardwired to desire. This post highlights one of our favorite components of our brand, #BEARDSWITHAMISSION.
For some, this comes easy. Family name, successes, socioeconomic status, looks, luck etc. definitely give some an advantage in terms of relationship, connectivity or belonging. Among us, however, is a voiceless and almost forgotten group—one that Beard & Tackle has come to value and appreciate—that doesn’t have the same ease to relationship, connectivity or belonging. Some of these have done a great work to tear down their sense of belonging. Some have sabotaged themselves into loneliness. Others have been abandoned and know no different.
The common denominator is the need to feel connected. To be known, to have someone call out your name is something most of us take for granted. A friendly greeting by handshake, or a gentle touch on the shoulder provides most with a boost of confidence, safety, or welcome. These seem like simple gestures that everyone should consider the norm, but for our homeless friends, this is rare. Many folks shy away from conversation, or any communication from a stranger approaching on the streets. In fact, many would avoid the potential for such a situation to occur. Maybe they walk to the other side of the street, take the long way, avoid eye contact and refuse to stop moving. We can’t deny we’ve done the very same things.
Thankfully, we’ve teamed up with Our Calling to help meet these relational needs. There are many reasons that people become homeless but Our Calling has targeted specifically the root of the issue. The need for connection and relationship; the need to be known. It was at an event hosted by Our Calling that we were introduced to one specific gentleman that has forever touched us and has lead us to dream big about our involvement with the homeless in the future. As we have stayed connected with this man through his many ups and downs over the last several months, we were finally able to celebrate him. We spent an evening with close friends, who have known about our friend, but had not yet met him. We celebrated his birthday, we celebrated a sense of belonging, we celebrated the joyful expectation of great things to come. His personal journey has taken him through unspeakable things, but in spite of those things; he is an incredible encourager and an incredible friend.
We look forward to discovering more ways in which we can serve. This experience has lead us to have conversations about how we can expand #BEARDSWITHAMISSION. We live in a fast paced society in which many families rarely eat dinner together. It’s very easy to be overwhelmed and feel insignificant in terms of being able to help others. As we’ve learned, a greeting, a hand shake, and a thoughtful conversation can not only create friendship, but be the very thing someone needs to find the empowerment to make real change in his or her life. Although our new friend is experiencing a transition to a better life, we can’t help but be overwhelmed by the unexpected joy we have found in that relationship. Will you join us?