Tonight I’m writing from a local coffee shop in Franklin, TN. The mocha lattes are the best here. AND so is the atmosphere. In fact… as I sit here in front of my laptop trying to find inspiration for my next free workshop… all I can do is watch and listen to the bold people in this place. Despite the media’s negative feed this morning… I see SO much good.
The people at Frothy Monkey on a Monday night:
I’m sitting across the room from two mature ladies. They don’t really “fit in” with the rest of the crowd here, but they clearly don’t care. I could tell by their interactions as they found their spot in the coffee shop that they are bold women who are on a mission. I’m close enough to their table to hear about every-other-word in their conversation. Though I’m trying really hard not to eavesdrop, I can’t help but notice the Bible sitting on the table between them. These women are having a deep conversation… one of the ladies is constantly flipping the pages and pointing to certain verses that she has clearly earmarked for this meeting.
The lady across from her is now crying. She is clearly moved by the words being shared and it is all I can do not to join in with the flow. These women… probably in their sixties or so… are doing exactly what women of faith should be doing. I seriously feel like running over to their table, grabbing their hands, and saying, “YES! This is what it is about! This is how you leave a legacy.”
No, Amanda. Now is not the time to interrupt. Let them have this moment. Don’t ruin it.
Instead of charging over to them… I decide to find someone else to observe.
The gal with guts.
As I’m scanning the room of people, a gal about my same age comes in and plops down at a corner table. She sets up her laptop, gets out a notebook, and digs through her purse for a few seconds. I assume that she is here to work on something important… just like me. Oh yeah… work. I need to get focused. I’m here to work… not people watch.
As I’m staring at the flashing cursor on a blank google doc, I feel someone standing next to me. I look up and the gal who was setting up her stuff across the room is now standing in front of me. I’m sure I look a little dumb-founded, but that doesn’t stop her from asking if I’ll watch over her things while she runs downstairs to order her latte.
“Sure, I’ll be happy to” is how I respond, but all I can think is how she and I are complete strangers. She has left her laptop AND purse on that table. I decide… she has guts.
As I glance between my computer screen and the table of items that I’m guarding, I wonder if this happens in other cities. Do strangers trust strangers in places other than the south? Is this a southern thing? Or is this just an honest person having hope? My heart wants to say the later is accurate.
Only a few minutes pass by when a group of young men walk in. My heart jumps into a flutter as these men start moving all the empty tables around to form one large table. One of them acknowledges the table that has the stranger gal’s stuff, but he ignores it and gathers chairs from another spot. I’m so glad that I didn’t have to run over and karate chop someone. Good job young man! You’re trustworthy in my book.
The stranger gal walks back into the room and thanks me for watching her stuff. “Absolutely. No problem at all.”
Not even two minutes later… I hear one of the young men say, “This week we are reading from Romans.” My mind races and I quickly look up. These young men have Bibles out on the table. Are you serious?? Another bible study on a Monday night? Is it national read your Bible day or something? I quickly open my Bible app on my phone. It is not national scripture reading day. I’m not even sure if that is a thing, but today feels like a good day to establish it.
I scan the rest of the room to check for Bibles. No other Bibles. Just laptops and people drinking coffee.
I can’t work.
All I can do is think about the people around me. I see a movement of bold people who have hope. Those who trust strangers. I see a generation pursuing to be the best version of themselves. I write everything about the last thirty minutes into a new note on my phone. This moment is worth documenting.
I realize after several minutes of insanely fast typing that I am not here to work. I am here to learn.
bold·ness / ˈbōldnəs/ noun
1. willingness to take risks and act innovatively; confidence or courage.
“the boldness and independence that characterized his leadership”
2. the quality of having a strong, vivid, or clear appearance.
“the boldness of the hues are very startling”
As a woman who is intently pursuing a greater calling, I need to be reminded of my purpose often. In fact… I’ll be the first to admit that I get lost in all the details, tasks lists, job duties, and opinion of others. I blame it on my perfectionist-syndrome. Some days… I get completely side-tracked and lose sight of what God has truly called me to do.
The funny thing is… I’m about 200% confident that the older women having a deep conversation in front of me, the stranger gal with all her stuff across the room, and the group of young men doing a bible study next to me… they were all placed at Frothy Monkey on this Monday night to remind me to be bold. To take risks. To be courageous. To not let the opinion of others persuade me to take a different path.
For I fully expect and hope that I will never be ashamed, but that I will continue to be bold for Christ, as I have been in the past. And I trust that my life will bring honor to Christ, whether I live or die. – Philippians 1:20
We’ve got a ton of bad things happening in the world, but… tonight I have hope. After a few sips of my white monkey mocha latte, I decide that I want to be bolder than my coffee. The question I have for you is this: Will you join me and my friends from Frothy on this movement to be bold?