Happy May! The sun is shining here in Georgia, but it’s already 90 degrees and I’m not sure if I’m ready for it. 70 and breezy was perfection (for the two weeks we had it).
We’re in the final weeks of the school year. As a Special Education teacher, the end of the year is one of the busiest times for us; my kiddos are moving into 6th grade, and I have to have a transition meeting for every one of them. There’s a lot of wrapping up to do and many end of the year tedious tasks that must be accomplished in a short period of time. In the midst of the crazy, I’m still very grateful for the school year I’ve had.
I’ve been actively trying to praise God for all of the blessings in my life, even the small ones. Doing this has kept me grounded when I have started to doubt myself or my relationships. Every morning, I always thank him for giving me the opportunity to have another day because even that is something I think we all take for granted. My pastor a few weeks ago said that life is “tissue paper thin.” We aren’t guaranteed tomorrow, so why do we act like it?
This past year, I’ve had the pleasure of deepening my relationship with God. I had a conversation with my husband a while ago where I mentioned feeling like I’m learning what it means to be a Christian all over again. I grew up in the church, I’ve always said I have a faith, but I wouldn’t always be able to answer questions about the Bible or feel comfortable discussing my faith with others.
I believe that having the opportunity to choose my own church has made an impact in this new feeling. I grew up a pastors kid, so I always went to my parent’s church. This was a blessing in itself, but looking back now, I don’t think I took it as seriously because it was my parent up there preaching to me and I often got “distracted” during the sermon. After moving out after college, my husband and I were able to try a few churches and go with the one we felt most at home with. When we lived in NY, I absolutely loved the church we ended up calling home. I joined a women’s bible study that completely surrounded me during a rough patch in my life. When we found out that we were moving to Georgia, I was excited for the new opportunity given to us, but I was afraid that I wouldn’t find another church that would feel like home. Funny enough, a member of my bible study in NY recommended a church that she went to when she lived in Georgia and sure enough, we tried that church and I immediately felt at home. It’s a way bigger church than I am used to, but I can feel the Holy Spirit working within this church and it’s something I knew I wanted to be apart of.
We did try another church that my husband went to when he was down here for some training, and it was a wonderful church, but it was not one that I felt led to; I couldn’t picture myself in the community. Being a military couple, community is super important to us because it’s your community that becomes your family and support system, especially when our immediate family is so far away.
If you have been hesitant about joining a church, I encourage you to at least try to put yourself out there and get involved. I used to be a big believer that you don’t have to go to church to be a christian, but I found that when I wasn’t going to church, I wasn’t encouraging myself to have a deeper relationship with Christ. If anything, I was the one hindering it.
You might not enjoy the first church you go to and honestly you might not love every single thing about the church that you do end up going to. If that does happen to you and there is one thing you don’t like about the church, I really encourage you to pray about it before leaving. A church is not perfect. I think we have this perfection mentality that comes with the definition of church, but we have to remember that we are sin-filled humans and we are going to make mistakes. Leaders of your church might make mistakes. If you keep leaving a church for the smallest thing that happens, you are never going to truly find a community that you feel apart of.
If you are interested in hearing more about Church, the Journey Women Podcast is doing a serious on the church right now and they’re answering a lot of great questions. https://journeywomenpodcast.com/
I’ll end this blog with a quote from a guest pastor on one of their podcasts titled: “Finding a Local Church with Mark Dever.”
“I don’t think Jesus intended us to follow him alone.”Mark Dever
I hope you all have a wonderful weekend, xo