Sunday, August 19, 2007

Life Groups

Today is Life Group Sign-Up Day at my church. I tend to greet each sign-up day with a mix of trepidation and excitement. It's sort of like registering for classes in college--there's that sense of urgency to pick the "right" class with the "right" professor before it fills up and I get stuck in Basket Weaving 101 with a tough-as-nails prof.

Of course, our church isn't quite so rigid in life group sign-ups, although we are encouraged to keep the groups to a max of around 12 people. Which rarely happens.

In the decade that I've been at my church, I've been part of some good life groups and some crappy ones. Last year I started off in a great group, one that I still consider to be in my top two or three favorite groups that I've ever been part of. After the break-up, I encouraged my ex-boyfriend to continue to go to our group and I tried to find another. I visited a couple of groups, but just couldn't bring myself to commit to one. Part of the struggle was that I was coming from such a dynamic group that I sort of felt like any group I switched to would be just a "rebound" group and I wouldn't be able to really commit. I felt like, if I couldn't commit, then it wouldn't be fair to be part of a group.

Another reason was that some Sundays, it was all I could do to make it through the Sunday morning service without breaking down, let alone drag myself out Sunday night and be part of a group of happy couples. I realize that I allowed myself to wallow quite a bit, but I also think that there were times when I needed to grieve and let things out and not put on a happy face and pretend that I was fine.

Anyway, after a summer-long break, life groups are starting up again, and I am determined to commit to one this year. The question is which one to commit to. I've been praying about it, and will continue to do so. I may visit one or two before signing up. Or I may bite the bullet tonight and commit to one, if I feel that God is leading me to it. The key phrase here is "God is leading me". I really want to be sensitive to His direction, even if He ends up leading me to a group that is totally not what I would have chosen on my own. (Funny how some of the best things in life start off being what we would not have chosen for ourselves.)

I'm trying to keep focused on how I can contribute to a group, and not necessarily what I can get out of a group. That's not to say that I won't be blessed by it--indeed, I know that I will--but it's tempting to approach a group looking for your needs to be met, rather than trusting God to meet those needs and to let Him use you to reach out to others in the group.

I'd appreciate your prayers in this decision about which group to commit to. I've missed being part of a life group, and definitely feel that it's time to get back into one.


Anonymous said...

Our lesson from this morning is still on my mind - it was about getting in the game. You would've enjoyed the applications to sports. Anyway, be thankful that God is putting you in the game, get in there and get after it! You may be the key player for one of those groups! They need you as much as you need them!

Now, if I could only make myself believe it! :)

Lisa said...

You're right, I'd probably have enjoyed a sports-related sermon! Thanks for cheering me on!

DJG said...

I will pray for you. I hope we have some semblence of small groups started by the first of the year...Cullman is in the dark ages...