***IF THIS IS YOUR FIRST READ, BE SURE TO START WITH THE FEBRUARY 16 ENTRY***
well, at that point in my life, i'm not sure exactly what was happening with my husband, but i know i was really searching and desiring accountability in my relationship with God. i needed someone to get in my face.
while we lived in the house that burned, we did get involved in a church between new waverly and huntsville. it was a little country church with a pastor barely older than us who really was looking for support. not realizing how much we were teetering, he put us in leadership right away.
sometime after the house burned but while we were still living with my aunt and uncle, we decided to leave the church. i can't really comment too much on whether it was the Lord. we thought it was the Lord telling us to leave. but i can say that it definitely wasn't the Lord in the way we left.
sometime when no one was there (i think on sunday afternoon), we went to the church building, took what was ours, left what was theirs ... with a note ... and never came back.
i said that to illustrate that i knew i needed something, and i was afraid because i had seen my potential to hurt and betray.
ok, back to the story.
as i said in chapter 3, we had visited that famous popular church a long drive off, and while james really liked it, i had never gotten a response to my cards asking for information on getting a more intimate involvement. so after we moved, i decided to check out that church down the road, and i would report back to james what i thought.
i can't say i remember anything about the sermon except that i managed to sit in the back of the youth section and decided not to sit there anymore. i also remember that i was sure to fill out one of those little cards "on the back of the seat in front of you" and put in the offering. that was the most exciting part. that was the part that had a chance of connecting me to someone who would get in my face about my soul.
a couple of days later i got a handwritten card in the mail, signed by a lady named pat, that said they were happy i was there. another day soon after, the lady who had signed that card called to see if she could pray with me. another day, a lady named brenda called to invite me to her home group for young married women. i told brenda i couldn't come this thursday, but maybe next week. brenda kept calling until i started coming....and she called every thursday to make sure i didn't forget. pat called too....to pray with me.
if you know pat and brenda, you know that God answered my desire for someone to get in my face. when i say "in my face," i mean that they loved me enough to help me deal with what matters--to speak truth to me about what it looks like to live for Christ, and they were courageous enough to love me with open arms when they didn't even know who i was.
i never missed home group on thursdays, and i mean NEVER. and eventually God and brenda convinced me that it was important to be at church on sunday morning too.
There's something so incredible and God-evident about a true church family. My mother lives in northern michigan. i live in east texas. that's a serious commute. my mother is possibly my favorite person on the earth. but i realized that i'll see her in heaven, and right now i have to obey where God wants me to be. anyway, God has given me multiple other mothers who love me like a daughter and make it a great deal easier to be separate from my earthly mother in this life. He has also given me so much family--brothers and sisters in the body of Christ.
Flashing ahead....a few years later, God and Brenda and Pat convinced me to lead that home group that Brenda had invited me to. and i still lead that home group today. before i became a member of the church, God allowed me to find the pastor of that church that i betrayed and to ask forgiveness. i've been a member about 4 1/2 years.
but that's flashing ahead, and this isn't about being a member of Christ the King Church. it's about being a member of the body of Christ God's Son....and there's lots more to tell