A gentleman asked us, the JD Salesman and I if we would lead a 'care group'. That was 11 years ago. We really had no idea what we were in for but having spent a year in such a group at Clark and Wanda's house we knew the value of such.
Things have changed, people have come and gone for various reasons but over the last 3 or 4 years the same group has come together every other week for a couple of hours. There are 2 widows, one who still is raising children on her own. A number of years ago now we grieved as one of our seniors became sick in December and died in March. Her husband still comes. Then there is the brilliant retired teacher married to the gentle violinist. They have been married for over 25 years after their first spouses died. A single retired counsellor who came back to Alberta to be near family joined us four years ago. An alcoholic who has been clean for close to 30 years and his wife round out the group. Ten. Ten vastly varied backgrounds, personalities, occupations, families, representing six different churches. Ten people with histories of pain, of being misunderstood, of misunderstanding.
We are actually an unlikely group who would probably have never 'chosen' each other as friends. But 'somehow' we have come together, we care about each other, we care for each other. We come together, read some verses from a book of the Bible and then we sit back, wait, listen, talk, think, share thoughts and after an hour or more we are awed by what God, through the Holy Spirit has shown us. Sometimes it is a simple thought, sometimes it causes a stir, a change in thinking. But we learn together, we grow together, we respect each other, we accept each other no matter how differently we might think.
Maybe this is what church is really all about. Maybe this is 'church'.