The old saying is “good fences make good neighbors”. It’s based on the idea that establishing firm and unambiguous boundaries decreases the chance of disputes.
But isn’t there something more to being a neighbor than avoiding disputes? The story of the Good Samaritan in the Bible asks the question “Who was a neighbor to the man left for dead?” Being neighborly is more than standing on your side of the fence and minding your own business.
I think the saying should be “good doors make good neighbors”. Doors are a boundary. They have locks to keep out enemies or unwelcome influences. They give you a way of having your space and your time. But they also swing open to invite and welcome others in.
That’s what a neighbor does. Connecting with others happens through reaching out of our own private space and inviting others into it.
To do that requires a door. Invite somebody through yours today.
- Richard Hampton