My husband and I are leading a life group at our house on two Sunday nights a month. The theme of it is parenting, and we are using a book called Sacred Parenting by Gary Thomas. It’s an excellent book, I highly recommend it. The premise of the book is about how God uses our roles as parents to change us. Most books are about “7 steps to better kids” or some such thing, but this one focuses on us as parents, which I like.
Last night was the first meeting. It went really well and we had a good turnout. I really enjoyed getting to talk with other parents about their success and struggles. We don’t often get to do that. We were able to encourage one another as we all have children of various ages and stages. I feel like it will be a great group to be apart of and I look forward to getting to know people on a deeper level.
I have to share how this all got started and how God has been dealing with me through it. Early this summer, I was having a little “whine fest” with God about other churches that I had seen that had small groups, as ours did not at the time, and how I thought it would be so neat to join one. So after a while of my complaining, God said to me “you be the solution”. Often times when we complain to God about something it is an opportunity for His call to our action. I was resistant to the idea for a number of reasons. First, I have four boys under age 8 with the two youngest being 18 months and 6 months, respectively. We are BUSY, to say the least, and most days I feel like I am just keeping my head above water or above the laundry pile. Second, I don’t feel qualified to lead a small group. I don’t know that much about parenting, having done it for just 7 years now. I certainly don’t know much about any children older than 7. And I have a pretty long list of what not to do with those under 7 as I have tried and failed a number of times on a number of issues. So, I decided I would bring it up to my husband. He also was against the idea for the aforementioned reasons. But God was persistent with me. I finally decided I would try to “get around” Him and bring the idea up to our youth pastor at our church. This action has the guise of being obedient in that I am pursuing this idea, but what I knew was that our church had been resistant to small groups in the past, for various reasons, and I was counting on that still being the case. So, I thought I would bring up the idea, and he would say ‘no’, and that would be the end of it. I don’t really know why I still think I can outsmart God, but I do. It never works, I should know this.
So, I talked with our youth pastor and his wife, who also happen to be close friends of ours, about the idea. He loved it and encourage me to speak to our head pastor about it. I said ‘yeah, okay I will do that’ meaning sometime next year or something. I was still resistant to doing this although I was getting to the point where I knew this was what God wanted and I was also getting a passionate spark in my spirit about it. So, the next day our youth pastor was speaking with our head pastor and he said “have you talked to Glenn and Ruth recently?” The head pastor said “no, but you know what I have been thinking about lately? small groups”. So, they talked about my vision for small groups and this whole thing was born. And now here I am leading a small group with my husband not two months later.
The truth of it is, I am really passionate about the small group idea, I just wasn’t sure I should lead one. But apparently God was sure, and He has led us to this great book study we are doing. I don’t really feel like I am leading the small group, as much as facilitating the small group. I don’t want people to feel like I am talking “at” them all the time. This shouldn’t be the Ruth and Glenn show, but a place where people can express their thoughts freely.
It just goes to show that sometimes when you feel like there is a hole in ministry or something that isn’t being done around you, maybe God is calling you to do that thing. He will meet you in your weaknesses and use those for His purpose. Even if you don’t feel qualified to do something, He can use you. You just have to be willing.