Have you ever been in a situation where you really felt like someone who was talking to a group was talking directly to you? This has happened to Mike and I on 2 separate occasions. Last August we were sitting in our church in Michigan, Cherry Hill United Methodist Church, listening to our Pastor, Merlin Pratt, give the sermon. We had been contemplating all morning if we should let the congregation, our second family, know that we would be moving. At first we weren't going to say anything but Pastor Merlin's sermon strongly moved us to share what was going on in our lives. Unfortunately we didn't get to spend a lot of time getting to know Pastor Merlin. He joined Cherry Hill the beginning of August and we moved Labor Day. But, he made an impact on us in a short time. That Sunday his message was about how sometimes in our lives we just have to move on and get past a situation. How we are not alone if we travel through life with God. It felt like Pastor Merlin was talking directly to us. That he knew we were struggling with the right words to share our good fortune, our fears and our concerns. It was a powerful moment for us as a couple.
Fast forward to this past Sunday. We are in our new church, Morton UMC. We have got to know the pastor a bit from his visits to the hospital with Molly and us. He is a very kind man who knows just the right thing to say. His name is Pastor Paul. His message this week was about fitting in to God's circle. I feel like we already knew that we were always welcome into the inner circle with God. The hard circle to sometimes fit in is when you are the new kid on the block. It's hard moving to a new community where you don't know a soul. I've had some blind luck and picked a good pediatrician office, a good preschool and fun ballet studio. But, it can be challenging to find the right "in" on things socially. I know it will help when we move into a neighborhood and a house. I remember feeling this way when we moved into our first house in Sagamore Hills. It took quite a while to feel like we knew our neighbors well enough to do social things with them. And now when I look back I can laugh at that because they are still, to this day, some of our nicest friends who we visit with when we go back to Ohio. I felt like Pastor Paul was saying to me, hang in there. You are already in the inner circle that you are suppose to be, the rest will come in time. I'm just not an exceptionally patient person so waiting it out can be frustrating for me. Although they say that all good things come to those who wait!
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