Hi! This is Patty. I’d like to introduce you to a special member of our family and outreach team. Meimei is a pure bred mutt. We got her three months ago at the Denver Dumb Friends League.
You may remember that in March while we were still in Beijing wrestling with God about our new call to Boulder CO, we lost our dear old Fox Terrier, JiaoZi (Dumpling), to cancer. He was part of our family for 6 years and it was a difficult loss. At that time, I began to pray for our next pooch.
We knew that Father was leading us to live missionally in Boulder, meeting people, making new friends, inviting them to be a part of our new Boulder family. Som, we knew that we would need a special dog.
In researching the culture of Boulder we quickly found a love for dogs—rescues in particular—and a people that welcome dogs to the hardware store, grocery store and even church.
We had been in our home for three months and were feeling more settled when it became apparent that it was time to go find our dog. I got a bit crazy for a while researching breeds and local rescues and humane societies. The search led me to meet my dearest local friend, (we’ll introduce you to her in a future newsletter). But it wasn’t till Samuel and Chloe were home for a school break that we prayerfully got in the truck together and drove to Denver to see who was waiting to be adopted.
That day Father answered our prayers for a friendly young dog who would help us to meet more people. “Sufi” had been surrendered just three days before because of her former pet-parents divorce. Chloe and Samuel quickly renamed her MeiMei, which means “little sister” in Chinese. She fit in to our family immediately like she had always been with us.
Since then I’ve been able to meet so many people who formerly walked by ignoring me or paying attention to their own business. Now I have a moving dancing sign that calls out to everyone on our walk that we are friendly and want desperately to make friends and play, play, play!
Daily I come home with new names to write on our new friends banner—names to pray for. Some have shared their phone numbers in hopes that we can have a puppy play-date. Just today I met six new people and two new dogs; exchanged two phone numbers, and made one puppy play date for next week, and had two meaningful conversations.
My puppy play date is with a 23 year old girl who has been here for a few months, a transplant from the east coast. She came here with her dog to start a new life working at a local dispensary. Exactly half my age, our dogs gave us an excuse to introduce ourselves and become friends.
For me, living a missional life looks like finding ways to put myself in my community and giving people an excuse to become friends. It looks like inviting them to come closer and asking the Father for meaningful spiritual conversations. It means walking with my eyes wide open and seeing each person who crosses my path as a potential brother or sister in Christ. Meimei helps me to do that. She makes me get out daily for long walks in places many others walk, she invites others to be our friends and she plays hard with their dogs so that I can get to know people better. She is my favorite outreach tool. ☺️