Strangers become Friends
Every single person who is welcomed into MISSIO, no matter where they are at on their journey, has a life that is worth living and a purpose worth fighting for. Simply being willing to see anyone who walks into our doors as friend is the key to unlocking the beautiful story that can be found deep within.
As many of you know, it is our privilege to serve women who are at risk and in recovery every single week, at no cost. The simple act of offering them a fresh color & a haircut or giving them a manicure or pedicure in our studio makes a deep impact. Not only does it give our friends something to look forward to, but it is a reminder that they are worth spending time with, worth being pampered & worthy of receiving love.
A soothing spa-like atmosphere is created in our single studio salon at the MISSIO office and they are welcomed with a coffee or tea, a warm smile and someone to take their coat. As we lead them over to the chair, they notice a space that has been set aside just for them. Their own sanctuary where they will receive our full attention for the next few hours. Our guest is naturally invited to relax, exhale fully and simply receive the gift that is about to unfold.
We begin by sitting down in front of them, looking into their eyes and reminding them how glad we are they were able to come. Then we simply ask, “So what would you like to do today?” After hearing all of their hopes and dreams for their hair or shuffling through a few pinterest photos to decide on the style of choice, we begin. The conversation that ensues is always so natural, and led completely by our guest. As they continue to relax into the moment, we love getting to know each other and hearing whatever might be on their mind. As with any client at a salon, they are welcome to sit back and enjoy in silence or dive into conversation. The goal is that there is no expectation for them. Whatever they choose to share is completely up to them.
Sometimes they open up and share their story, along with depths of emotion and pain, and all the dark and bright spots that their journey has held. Sometimes we just talk about the weather, our favorite recipes and restaurants and what being pregnant & having babies was like. The point is that while serving them, we simply seek to see them as our friend. This changes everything. This has been the key to unlocking something incredibly powerful & special during these times. When it feels heavy, we focus on celebrating the new and the now and how they have been rescued out of those times. When it feels light, we lean in, laugh, dance and enjoy the moment.
The truth that we have learned over the years is people can sense how we feel about them. Others feed off of our words, body language and comfort levels in their presence. Having the mindset and a heart set out to see these opportunities to serve not as just a “service” (with a distinct divide existing between those giving and receiving) but as a chance to make a new friend changes everything. It shifts the atmosphere from a “give and take” experience to an atmosphere of acceptance & love, relationship, laughter and understanding. A chance to bear one another’s burdens for a few hours by entering into conversation together and truly caring. And this is what helps to change lives, to spark the new, to allow God to work in supernatural ways with restoring hope and bringing healing.