I have landed in my childhood’s big city – Mumbai. Even though decades have passed, the city known then as Bombay has not changed at its core. It is more of what it always has been. The roads are still congested. The slums still extend far beyond one’s imagination. The chaos was and is so overwhelming, one wonders how anything possibly works.
In the midst of it all, friends work and call this place home. I have come to them to ask a few questions. I know I can trust their insights. They have tackled the challenges of doing business in this city. They did more than just survive. They actually moved things forward. It is an incredible achievement to do it once. In their histories, you can see the story repeated on multiple occasions. As our dialogue begins, their wisdom carries its own power.
The idea of listening to those that have a proven record is an old one. A generation long since forgotten took the same approach. In a letter to another community, they noted that “we picked men we knew you could trust, Judas and Silas—they've looked death in the face time and again for the sake of our Master Jesus Christ.” (Acts 15.26) With their credentials, others listened.
Many today are looking for peace. Others are looking for a sense of purpose. How we experience both is relevant to their quests. As much as I would like to smother them with words, my history is most relevant to their quest. How did I stand under pressure? What did I do when things were tough? Did my actions in times of crisis reflect the values I say are important?
Today begins with two opportunities. First, God invites you and me to rest with compassion. The invitation gives us the opportunity to discover peace. Second, we are invited to share what works and learn from each other. The latter does not work without the former – even when we are talking to ourselves. Having something to say starts with have an experience.
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