One of the first things on our to-do list when we moved here was to find a new church home. We had been in the same church since shortly after we got married, almost 5 years. We had made good friends and were very comfortable there. It's tough to go into churches where you're the new people. It's strange to sit in a worship service and feel more like a spectator, as you "check things out", than a participant. Luckily, we didn't have to look very long before we landed where God wanted us.
In the past few months, we've gone from the new people to active members. We've gotten involved in a Sunday school class that we love, filled with people of all ages and varying opinions. It never fails that I leave class every week with a new perspective and something to think about in my own life. And we tend to laugh a lot, and that's always good.
A enjoys the nursery and is starting to become very interested in the other babies. V is in the "big boy" class and loves it!
We've also joined a small group Bible study that meets in our minister's home every week. The other couples in our group have small kids as well, which makes us feel better about the craziness that comes along with bringing ours. It's such a nice mid-week refresher of food, fellowship, study, and discussion.
The last, and probably biggest "sign" that we were where God wanted us, was the opportunity to join in the praise team. Leading worship is something that Justin has been doing for a long time, and something that we've done together a lot over the years, even before we started dating in high school. While we loved our previous church home, this was one area we have the chance to serve in, and missed it terribly. More on praise team in another post.
Like I said before, it's so tough to be the new people, to not feel at home. But God had a plan for us when He moved us out here, and I believe he had a plan for us from the first time we visited Harmony Christian Church. After a few weeks of visitor jitters, we started to settle in, feel accepted, get involved, and begin to love it and the people. Harmony has become our church family. I look forward to going to church every week - there have been seasons in my life where that wasn't always the case, where I went because I should, because I needed to. I look forward to small group halfway through the week - it's a great pick-me-up for the rest of the week. When we leave church or Bible study, I feel refreshed, renewed, full. This may not sound very significant to you, but there have been different points in the past several years where this was not the case for me, where I just felt stagnant. I've never felt like we were in a church where we didn't belong, but right here right now, I feel like we are right where we are meant to be. I feel like God has put us here for a purpose, and I'm loving discovering that week after week. God is good!