It is easy to get out of community with church. b and I used to lead a small group at our house, but with a second colicky baby + the meeting being on Friday nights, it became too much and we called it quits. so we went almost a year without a group.
I noticed, a year out of any set small group that it was easier to be discontent with the church, easier to take offense at the church, less desire to attend, to take the trouble. And during that same year my side of the family began to be ripped apart by the selfish actions of a certain member of the family. Sin can destroy so much so quickly.
We got to a point, this December, where we decided that even if it meant only me and the girls going to a group (there aren’t any groups that meet when b is off work), we must must must get back into community with our church. we hadn’t realized how much support we were getting from community until it was sporadic, whenever-we-can-get-together kind of support.
we miss sitting around the dinner table weekly telling other brothers and sisters in Christ what is going on with us, what spiritual battles we’re fighting. we miss all the kids running around playing and fighting and tugging each others hair and we miss those nights our table was full and then some, chairs pulled up all around.
I think church community is a little (imperfect, maybe burnt on the edges) taste of heaven really. Because my personality shouldn’t like it at All—an introvert entertaining a dozen people in her house weekly, and loving it? eating dinner with a big group of people, some of whom I’ve never met before? no. that is not me. But its me in Christ.
One thing I learned in 2014 is that it matters very little what interests, life experience, stage of life you have in common, if you have Christ in common, then you are family.
If it were up to me, I would’ve kept waiting to stumble upon all the artsy writer types (who are also young moms and maybe work a little outside the home) to find my community in church (guess how many of those are in my church? that is right: one!). I’m thankful that b. led our household in a direction I wasn’t comfortable with—into the crowd. Into fellowship with Athletes and Popular Girls and, good gracious, even Sciencey Types.
So as the family I was born into suffers, crumbles even, i don’t need to feel that I’m left without a family—the one I was reborn into is forever. And now we’re reaching back out to it—pulling up our chairs to the table.