Why yes it is.
Here's the thing, about seven months ago, Jeff and I found a new church. We went off and on at first; we were visiting a lot of churches in the area, looking for the right one. But we kept coming back to this one particular church in town. Every time we went, we just felt that the messages were spot-on speaking to us. It was almost uncanny, how every message was just speaking so clearly to both me and Jeff. So we decided to plug ourselves into this church and make it our home.
The 'making it our home' part is harder than it should be sometimes.
We'd gone to a small group at a different church (pre-kids) and loved it. But once everyone in the group started having kids, meeting regularly became impossible. We stayed in each other's lives absolutely, but we stopped meeting on a schedule. But at lots of churches these days, the main way to meet people is to join a small group. So I met with the small group leader and told her what Jeff and I were looking for in a group, and she connected us to one. This past Sunday was our first time going.
I was nervous. (Jeff thought it was silly but I wouldn't doubt if he was nervous too. He hides it well.) I think my nerves came from the fact that we were committing to going to this group, and yet I had no idea if they would like us or not (or if we would like them). Also, they've been a group for a while, so they're already sort of a family. We're the new kids in town and I wondered how happy they actually would be that we were joining the party.
Whatever the rationale, I was nervous. Once we got there, everyone was super nice and friendly and seemed happy to have us join them. I think Jeff and I were both taking it all in, looking for a place where we'll fit. It's crazy that at my age, I'll still worry whether someone will like me. Whether I'll fit in and be accepted. I know some people have oodles of confidence and don't struggle with this. I'm not one of them. Are you? Or do you still struggle with insecurity even as you grow older?
Right off the bat we could tell that this is a group that laughs a lot. Some of the guys are jokesters and we were all rolling with laughter a few times. I know Jeff appreciates this. He's a jokester and he likes people who are funny. I could tell I liked the dynamics of the group. Really, I think we were super lucky to find this group. I hope they liked us. Of course, just as one of the girl's is wrapping up her talk for the evening--I get a call from our brand-new babysitter who is watching the kids for the first time. I slide over to the next room to take the call and say, "Amanda? Everything okay?"
"Brandy?" she sounds panicked. "I'm locked out of the house."
My heart drops. "WHERE ARE THE KIDS?" my voice is so loud that I hear all the voices in the next room vanish in an instant. Everyone's listening. I am immediately envisioning Lincoln merrily making his way to the top of the stairs and then falling back down them.
"They're both in bed asleep. I stepped outside to talk to my dad and when the door closed behind me, I didn't realize it was locked."
This actually happens to us often so I understand. We have those weird door handles that do that. I breathe a sigh of relief that Linc is in his crib. "We are on our way right now. Just wait outside."
So we interrupt the last five minute of the one girl's talk by rushing out of the house in a flurry to get across town to our kids who are alone in the house. The poor babysitter was standing outside in the cold, no shoes, waiting for us.
Ah, the drama we bring with us.
We'll see how it goes next time. I won't be so nervous now that I know how nice everyone is. :)
What about you? Is your family part of a small group? How has that worked out for you? Do you ever worry whether you'll be accepted? Whether you'll fit in? How do you let go of your anxiety?