Well, I have known that God wanted me to do it, but I continued to make excuses about how busy I am, how it would interfere with family time, how it was an added stresser that I simply didn't need. But they were all just....excuses! So last night I hosted my first neighborhood Ladies Bible Study. The kids and I passed out 50 invitations to all the homes on our street. I was still slightly embarrassed to invite people, and I'm not really sure why???? It's almost like I don't want to be an imposition to them but I know that many woman are hurting and need a Savior.
A fear of my thoughts were:
- Well, I'll get several "churched" ladies who just want to see my house/visit/etc.
- What if my immediate neighbors come...the ones who only see me in my pajamas while taking out the trash....and then it's just more of an intimate relationship than "Hi, how are you?" Do I have time/energy for that?
- How do I prepare because I don't want to be too "in your face" with Jesus and Scripture yet I also want them to go away having received an invitation to know Him and understand more about Him.
- I didn't want to hurt school time cleaning all day in preparation. I wanted keep my day fairly similar yet still get all I needed done.
- I didn't want to be stressed when Josh got home from work and ask him to help clean anything or not prepare a good dinner.
Here was what happened:
- By the grace of God, I did not get stressed about getting ready or cleaning at all. And that is totally a God thing!
- Both kids had a early morning dentist appointment. Plus we took Auntie lunch at college and then had an orthodontics appointment at 1:30 PM. This was all a recipe for disaster if I had been functioning in MY strength.
- Although there were LOTS of added "things" the kids still got all their school work done even though we had to go later into the evening.
- I worked diligently throughout the day to do a little here and a little there so as to not have a large load of cleaning at the last minute. It worked! I was again reminded that MY ATTITUDE determines so much of the tone of the home and our day. Thank you Lord for your help.
- Josh got home and had a moment of anxiety as I thought about having to cook dinner...which created a mess that I didn't want to have in my clean kitchen. But then I remembered that my FAMILY is my priority. It all worked out. We ate, I did the dinner dishes, made a batch of brownies, got the kids in bed, lit the candles....and waited and prayed.
- No one showed up. I was a bit disappointed because I really feel God wanted me to do it. Then I thought "If I had personally invited more instead of just passing out flyers to most perhaps they would have come." But I'm not going to be discouraged. I'll pass out more flyers this week and try to personally invite more.
- I had originally not wanted my friends to come because I want it to be for my neighborhood, but since everything was ready I posted on FB that if any friends wanted to come and two ladies came that have never been to my home.
It was a really nice evening. We talked and I shared on ATTITUDE and read a lot of Scriptures from Philippians chapter 2 and 4. Although it is a lot of work to prepare for, it also feels so good to open my home to others. I know that hospitality is an area that I lack in. I enjoy having people over but I also have some anxiety about making sure everything is perfect when they come. I'm trying to release that (yet still make things very nice:-). Next week we'll be looking at Ephesians and loving others!
"Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others. Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus." Philippians 2:3-5