Monday, 9 March 2009

Where I'm at now... and my dreams of Christian community

September 3 2000

At church this morning the minister announced his wife has left him. Nobody said a word. He is heartbroken. After service he took me aside and asked me to pray for him.

January 2001

So we came here in July 1999. Since I have come here, I have had opportunities to help lead worship at church, by playing my guitar and singing, and sometimes playing piano. I have attended a Moms in Touch group and a ladies Bible Study and prayer group. I have attended two family camps and a family retreat with my kids (my husband was also able to join us for one family camp). The kids have been able to attend many wonderful youth retreats, Christian Concerts, Potters House, Sunday School, and a bit of youth group.

I have shared short talks at the Christian Fellowship church each of the past two Christmas seasons for the 5 Sundays of Advent. I have been involved in an Alpha group at the Anglican church which has been a real blessing. One time I was asked to be the speaker at the local monthly Christian Women’s Luncheon. As on other times I have spoken in the past, God did move, and there were tears and response by the listeners to God’s Spirit.

I have continued my interest in education by tutoring some home school kids, and tutoring a special needs boy, which has taught me many new things and softened my heart to needs in peoples’ live which I never knew existed. I had definitely planned to substitute teach here, but after 5 formal applications, for no apparent reason still have not been accepted. God has closed that door firmly!

My parents moved to a Senior’s Complex in a nearby community, and suddenly we found ourselves also with the responsibility of a large yard and orchard of about 100 apple trees. I have joyfully, after some spiritually dry years in our former community, frequently attended 3 services on Sundays, going to the Anglican Church with one daughter and my husband, to the Christian Fellowship Church with two other daughters and my son, and to the Pentecostal, where yet another daughter attends. There have been good times, and I have rejoiced that my children, for the most part, have found places where they are happy to worship.

There have also been hard times, and I have lived through sorrows (but even in them God has brought joy!) like addictive behaviors, suicide attempts, teen pregnancy. Learning, learning, learning. Learning to lean on God, and accept following Him step by step, moment by moment, instead of making big plans for some exciting, “big, important ministry.”

My dream of Community has continued. But as time has gone by, it has developed especially into a kind of retreat center for women. A place where women could come (sometimes with their children… maybe even with their husbands ) and grow and share together and support each other. Learn together the old skills… quilting and planting and knitting and sewing and healing with herbs and things like that. Singing together, praying together, studying the Word together, worshiping together. Sharing each others burdens… and each others joys. Becoming holistically healthy and fit together… exercise, healthy home-grown and cooked foods, emotionally supporting each other, exploring our creativity and art and writing together, growing together spiritually, learning from each other whatever skills and interests each of us has. A place where teenage single moms could come for support and encouragement and healing. A place where moms with little kids or bigger kids or teen kids (and husbands!) could come for support and encouragement and healing. A place where women without children could come and share in the mothering experience and experience support and encouragement and healing. A place where women can share the love of God, and love each other as mothers and sisters and daughters.

I have also dreamed of being able to more often share with women in the arena of womens meetings, and weekend retreats… not just as a speaker but in a holistic way, sharing a vision of wholeness in a life permeated by faith in God.

1 comment:

Improvedliving said...

This christian community really rocks for sure. I love Jesus.

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