“Kindred spirits are not so scarce as I used to think. It’s splendid to find out there are so many of them in the world.” – L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables
Yesterday, I spoke of my love for Anne of Green Gables, and I wanted to talk about that story another day. I learned of kindreds first from Anne Shirley. I used to think that there was only one or two kindred spirits that a person met during their lifetimes, but as I walk through this time continuum, I realize that they aren’t as scarce as I used to think. Sometimes you may have a kindred for a time, as it is needed, and then time or distance or circumstances move that kindred away, and while they remain a kindred, I used to think they had to be a part of your life full-time to share your heart.
That simply isn’t true.
Most of my dearest kindreds are living separate lives in other states or countries. I may connect with them a few times a year or once a month or every several weeks, but I may not connect with them for a year or two (or more) at a time; yet, I’m sure, there are those who I could start right back up into a deep relationship with, even with 20 years in between. Why? It’s because of being kindreds.
Then, there are the kindreds that you fall in love with upon first meeting, and maybe you don’t create a close relationship, but every time you see them, you feel a comfort and peace. I’ll give you some examples. This week, I had lens implants so that I can see better without glasses. It’s been a dream of mine since way before LASIK was invented, but the time (or $$) wasn’t right. Recently, we went to a seminar with one of the most learned ophthalmologists in Middle Tennessee, and maybe in the US, as far as specific eye conditions are concerned. This doctor has helped blind people see again, and has written more than a half-dozen text books for those learning ophthalmology. Dr. Wang left communist China following the years of student labor camps, and came to the US as an atheist. Today, he is a sweet Christian man, who even prayed with me before my procedure. He’s not someone playing a Christian on TV.
Some of the techs at Dr. Wang’s office are people I would consider kindreds. They are precious and attentive, and remember your name, even with the stream of patients that come through the office. They are not the types of kindreds that will likely have a close relationship with me, but in the time we are together, I can tell their hearts are closely aligned with mine. They treat people so respectfully, and yet have fun with them, you can see what type of people they are simply in the atmosphere of that office. Those are the types of people I’m seeing more and more of.
My definition of kindreds may be changing. Yes, I love the type of kindreds Anne Shirley spoke of, that she had in her Diana. But kindreds are less scarce than we think. We just need to keep our eyes open for them.
DAY 139 HOMEWORK: Who might you come across in a day who could be a kindred? Feed those relationships with kindness. You may be surprised at the number of kindreds there actually are around you.