Fellows Reflection: Katy Correa
Jan 16, 2020|Written By: Katy Correa
“There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. We love because he first loved us.” – 1 John 4:18-19
Love. One word that holds so much weight. That carries with it so many questions. Something that I believe I will constantly be learning more about for the rest of my life.
Since moving to the Prospect neighborhood in August, I have been able to learn about love and about how to love people better than I have before. If we’re being honest, it can be hard to love people, and even harder to do it well. In addition, most of us are terrified to love those around us fully because of the emotional consequences we believe to be attached to that word.
Ministering in the in-between
My job as a Fellow is primarily working with the middle school programming that Abundant Life has in place. Yet I think the ways that I have experienced the Prospect community the most is during the in-between. Walking to and from work. Going to the park. Going on runs and then stopping to talk to people I pass.
One specific “in-between” instance that comes to mind happened back in September. As my housemate Rachel was returning from Forest Hills Park one Sunday afternoon, she was followed enthusiastically by four kiddos from the neighborhood. They ran right into our house after her to where Lynsey and I were sitting. The eldest, Saadia had taken her younger brother and sisters to the park. We see them often walking around the neighborhood and it is so clear as she takes care of her siblings that she loves them. But, the second they walked into our home it was as if joy embodied had entered the room.
We see them often walking around the neighborhood and it is so clear as she takes care of her siblings that she loves them. But, the second they walked into our home it was as if joy embodied had entered the room.
Bold, radical love
Junior, the youngest, proceeded to proudly dump his rock collection out on our floor to display that day’s findings. Now, as humans, it’s just natural that we hold close the things we take pride in. And we share those things with those we love. Junior didn’t have a care in the world that we had only met 20 minutes earlier. He freely invited us into the fun and to share in something that he loved.
The two other sisters, Amiya and Tahari, asked us if we would play duck-duck-goose with them. After the games were over, and the family was heading out, Junior confidently went around to each one of us to kiss each of us on both cheeks. He wanted to freely show all the love he had. I think that Sunday gave all of us and myself encouragement to go out and love people more boldly without fear. It showed me that love isn’t something that we need to store up and keep safe. But we should radically, freely love those that God places in our lives and obey the command found in Matthew 22:39: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”