The Connection We Hold Between Us

Samuel TeohMay 13, 2024

From America to Taiwan, from unrestrained Western culture to reserved Asian culture, the meaning of the word “community” to me has changed. For the first 14 years, I found my niche in a comfortable social circle of friends from homeschool groups and church. Then, after several months of moving, a 13-hour plane flight, and a week of jet lag, I found myself among people with completely different backgrounds, cultures, and languages.

What is community? Is it simply a group of people living next to each other, or is there a greater connection that threads us all together? By going through the experience of living a new life, crafting a new identity, and forging greater relationships, I learned that uniform commonalities do not bind the definition of a community. Communities are not restricted by where you come from or what language you speak.

The connection we hold between us, our community, is not rooted in how similar we are and how my favorite book is your favorite book but in our unwavering attempts to understand each other. Our desire should not be to find that fanatical friend, the one you click with instantly, but to build that friend through effort, to establish a bond that may last a lifetime.

Although culture, background, and a million other differences may hinder us, we should try to transcend these obstacles and build a connection, a society, and a community founded not on the exterior but on the interior. Not by background but by the present. Not with prejudice, but with love.