Thursday, October 2, 2008

New Church, New Friends, New Emotions

So Graham and I have been visiting a Presbyterian Church in Dallas, Providence Presbyterian, the last few weeks. It has been good, but hard at the same time. I didn't realize how easy it was to make friends and put yourself out there as a college student. I am also learning it is a lot different as an adult. That's fine though, in the end I will end up maturing and learning how interact with people who aren't college students and that's good. Haha.

So last night we had a young peoples gathering with the young people from Providence. It was also then that I remembered I get so intimidated by a backyard full of people I don't know. Luckily, these people are very nice and I met one girl who pretty much said, "Hey let me walk you around and introduce you to people." It definitely boosted my confidence, but I still remembered I am an introvert by nature and do much better with a group of small people than a room full. I tend to cower in room full of people and will stand off by myself until someone talks to me, whereas with a smaller group I get noticed that I am standing alone and I am forced to chat. I am slightly stubborn and need to be forced.

So while all these people are standing around chatting, I am aching for the food to be served so I can sit at a table with just 5 other people. This was the best part of the whole night. Graham sat on one of side of the table with the guys and I sat on the other side with some girls. I ended up chatting with a girl who reminds me of someone, but I can't put my finger on who. I guess that's why I felt so comfortable talking to her. She was God's encouragement to me that I am not the only one moving from a church where you grew up spiritually and had friends as close as family. She has been at Providence for about 2 and a half years, but she mentioned still struggling with similar things I am struggling with in being in a new place and in a new church. I wanted to just cry right there. Not only that but she came from a Bible church and mentioned missing a lot of the things from the Bible church that Presbyterian churches don't necessarily put a lot of emphasis on - especially if it is a planter church. I am not saying one is better than the other, they are just different. No church is perfect because it is full of sinners. We talked about desiring to "Do life" with others and being involved in our neighborhoods. It was so encouraging and I needed it so bad. I have been in dire need of a deep conversation about God, His glory, His desire for His people, and other random things with a girl. God knew I needed it even before I knew I needed it.

I think the hardest part about making new friends and being in a new place is that I just don't want to do it. I just want to be where I am comfortable and be with the people I already know. I don't like having to start at square one and start over. I don't like change. I am fighting on all fours against the change that has already happened. I feel this fighting and these changes have made me this ridiculously emotional person that I never used to be. I used to never cry and now I feel like I cry at least once a week. Little things that used to never bother me hurt my feelings. The Devil feeds me lies about other people and I believe them. It's one of those situations where I am at the end of the road and I just have to stop and tell the to Lord to take it from me. The problem is is that I don't like change, I am stubborn, and if I give it up then the change has happened and I can't take it back. It's a vicious cycle in my life that needs more serious prayer than I give it.

I feel like my posts are depressing. I might change that next time I decide to post. I guess I only feel like writing if I am sad or thinking about life or something like that.

P.S. Just wanted to mention that my husband is a Godsend and I don't think the Lord enough for his encouragement, wisdom, patience, and love.

3 comments:

Martha Elaine Belden said...

i'm with you on the "only feel like writing when i'm sad" thing. but know, this isn't sad. it's difficult, but it's beautiful because you're being honest about your sin and your desire to change. what God's doing in your life is wonderful, and it's something that will definitely touch others who read this and might be struggling with the same issues.

i'm (obviously!) an extrovert, but even i understand how difficult it is to begin again... especially when you love the place you just left. your struggles aren't unique to you... and i don't mean that in a belittling way. i hope it's an encouragement. i hope it shows you that your sins are not unheard of or bizarre. we are all scared of change and hesitant to give God the reigns, so to speak.

it's exciting, as a spectator, to see what God is doing in your life, and i hope you are able to embrace that excitement soon :)

love you, friend!

Brittany said...

"I think the hardest part about making new friends and being in a new place is that I just don't want to do it. I just want to be where I am comfortable and be with the people I already know. I don't like having to start at square one and start over. I don't like change. I am fighting on all fours against the change that has already happened. I feel this fighting and these changes have made me this ridiculously emotional person that I never used to be. I used to never cry and now I feel like I cry at least once a week. Little things that used to never bother me hurt my feelings."

Are we the same person? You just wrote out how I have been feeling so clearly.

I'm sorry we didn't get to meet up when you were visiting STL. If you come again, things should be more settled down and I would love to see you.

Everyone keeps telling me that things will get better, so I will tell you that too. Change is hard and new churches are hard.

Also, I think I might have a friend who goes to Providence. Did you happen to meet anyone named Bill Shaw or Eric Pyle?

Brittany said...

Oh and also I really want to make your blog title be Gratalie in my head.