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Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Pour Your Heart Out

If you need more info about Pour Your Heart Out, see THIS post.

But, really, it's anything that YOU consider pouring your heart out.

Be sure to check out some of the links- you will find some amazing stories out there.
Again, just a brief reminder that everyone linking is pouring their hearts out and we should all be respectful in our comments. ;)

You can grab the button on my memes page: check the tab at the top of the page.

Today's Pour Your Heart Out has to do with my faith. I know I don't blog about it all the time, but if you are interested you can check out what I believe and a little more about how that plays out in my life.

Something hit me as I sat in church this past weekend. Our pastor is doing a series on "Practical Atheists," those who believe in God but act as if He doesn't exist.

I read this bullet point and felt my stomach sink: Someone who cares more about what other people think than what God thinks.

And all I could think of is the reason that I stopped going to Bible Study this past fall.  You see, I missed out on the first two studies of the semester, due to scheduling conflicts with my boys' schools.

So, when I walked into that third study, there was no one at the greeting table to direct me as to where I was supposed to go. After I found the right room, I walked into a room of 300+ ladies all sitting at tables, talking away, waiting for the study to start.

No one said anything to me. No one asked me to sit with them.  It took everything I had in me not to turn right around and walk out.

But, I decided to find a table where there was an empty seat and ask to sit down. I did...and even tried to introduce myself, but all anyone did was smile, nod, and go back to their conversations.

After some announcements, we were told to go to our small groups. I found out what small group I was assigned to and sat down with them.  Very awkward conversation as they all looked at me like I had three heads because I was the only one in the group who was not a military wife.

Small group time is over and it's time for the video lesson. Everyone in the group gets up and disperses back to their friends.

I sat there thinking I wouldn't come back. I sat there judging, thinking that back when I ran a moms' group for my church back in PA, we ALWAYS had a greeter, along with others who were near the entrance to help people who were new. How we found a seat for them and assigned groups for everything so that no one was ever left feeling how I felt.

I sat in judgement of them. And I felt judged. I cared more about what they thought than about what God thought.

I never went back.

Even though part of my intent for going to Bible Study in the first place was to get to know some women in my church, the biggest reason was to grow in my relationship with God.

And I let that get set aside because I was too worried about feeling like the odd girl out in the study.

That's not right.

So, I'm trying again. Tomorrow starts the new semester of Bible Study and I signed up. I'll be there. And I'm not going to let it bother me if I don't fit in. Because that's not the point of going to Bible Study.

Edited to say: I will be there if it isn't canceled due to the crazy snow we have this week. We're on day 3 of no school.

Labels: ,


Blogger Life Without Pink said...

Shell I can completely relate because that is how I am too. Always worrying what others think and letting it have an effect on me. But I am trying to change as well. Good for you! Don't let them make you stop something that you really want to do. It'll all work out you'll see :)

January 12, 2011 at 7:12 AM  
Blogger FreeFlying said...

Good for you for trying again! I can totally relate. I've moved a LOT. Consequently, I've started at a lot of new churches. It's so intimidating. And, I'm sure you don't have this problem, everybody always seems so shiny and perfect that I get nervous to talk to them. Like, if they open with their perfect marriage and genius children, can I close with my struggles with alcohol? Inappropriate?

January 12, 2011 at 7:14 AM  
Blogger Sorta Southern Single Mom said...

Add me to the list - I would have done the same thing... and I think it has more to do with being ready than letting something get in the way of your relationship. He understands. Now you are prepared and ready and in a different place. Good for you! FWIW I stopped going to my Bible Study this year too. I just didn't fit in with my new work schedule and I miss it.

On a semi-related note: We are back in school today 2-hr delay

January 12, 2011 at 7:17 AM  
Blogger Oka said...

If there are 300+ women there, you are going to fit in with someone. I could be wrong, I highly doubt God's plan is to make stick out like a sore thumb (unless it feels right to you).

Secondly, I have trouble fitting in and am trying to work on it. One of my ways is not trying to focus on the differences, but focusing on similarities. You have to have some with these women. You don't have to dissect why they are similarities either, just realize they are there and you can make a connection there.

January 12, 2011 at 7:29 AM  
Blogger Steph said...

I always worry about whether or not I'll fit in. But you will definitely find someone you click with. Good luck!

January 12, 2011 at 7:30 AM  
Blogger Jessica said...

Wow that's a lot of people at a Bible study. It would be easy to feel out of place or just lost in the crowd I imagine.

I hope you enjoy the study!

January 12, 2011 at 7:33 AM  
Blogger KristinFilut said...

What a moving post. I stopped going to church because I didn't feel like I fit, like I had my place. I keep telling myself I'm going to look for a new church home, but I don't because I don't want to feel uncomfortable walking into an new place, where I know no one.

Thanks for the reminder that He is bigger than me and what I want.

January 12, 2011 at 7:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good for you going back... I probably wouldn't. Hope they are more social with you this time!

January 12, 2011 at 7:54 AM  
Anonymous Not a Perfect Mom said...

That takes a lot of courage to go back...good for you!
I'm not sure I would be a big enough person if I had felt unwelcome and out of place..
But you're so right...all of those people are not the reason for being there...

January 12, 2011 at 8:00 AM  
Blogger Jen said...

I can totally relate to this post.

January 12, 2011 at 8:05 AM  
Blogger Missy said...

I may get popped for saying this...But THIS scenario you decried is one of the MANY reasons my family and I no longer attend church.

It became apparent that the so-called "Christians" were hypocritical even within our (former) church's walls and many times, what you described, we too have had to endure.

It mainly centered around my son who as you know Shell, has a lot of problems mentally, emotionally and behaviorally. Those people ALWAYS treated him 'different' and in turn, treated my family as a whole differently because we weren't "normal".

So, we have "church in our hearts", pray when we feel lead to and we follow our personal faith as a family in our own way.

After all, since we aren't "normal folk" we may as well show it, right? (=

I'm much happier without church. As is my husband and kids. We honestly don't miss it.

January 12, 2011 at 8:12 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

This was so honest and refreshing, Shell. I loved it. This dilemma reminds me of the D.C. Talk song "What if I stumble, what if I fall" that starts out with the words: "The greatest single cause of atheism in the world today
Is Christians who acknowledge Jesus with their lips
Then walk out the door and deny him by their lifestyle.
That is what an unbelieving world simply finds unbelievable."

Thanks for reminding of this song. I pray you make the connections you long to make at your church!

January 12, 2011 at 8:19 AM  
Blogger Renegades said...

Good luck!

January 12, 2011 at 8:21 AM  
Blogger JDaniel4's Mom said...

Our mom's group was cancelled yesterday due to snow. It is hard to walk into groups cold. My study can be the same way. It doesn't help that I am old enough to be the mother of many of the other moms.

Thankfully I have been assigned to the older moms table.

January 12, 2011 at 8:52 AM  
Blogger Julia Ladewski said...

that's too bad. i hate when things like that happen, especially at a place like church where you would think people would be welcoming. i pray that this semester goes better and that God leads you to some amazing women friends!!!

January 12, 2011 at 9:03 AM  
Blogger Darlene said...

I have felt the same way. I wonder why those (me) who have received the love and forgiveness of Christ, can be so judgemental of those who have also recieved the love and forgiveness of Christ. But, as we (me) continue to grow and become more focused on Christ, we will see that we are all in the same boat...imperfect people, trying to serve Christ in our imperfect way, thankful that He is the perfect one, who loves us and forgives us and saves us.

January 12, 2011 at 9:22 AM  
Blogger Tylaine said...

I love reading your PYHO posts Shell. You're so honest and real. I admire you for giving Bible study another shot. It is not easy when we don't fit in but you're so right. How often do we do or not do things for others and not for God. Isn't what He thinks of us more important?

January 12, 2011 at 9:30 AM  
Blogger KLZ said...

I hear this. It really strikes a chord. But then, I've got my own ways I'm...not up to snuff on this.

January 12, 2011 at 9:33 AM  
Blogger Liz said...

I find holy stuff to be tricky. I'm baptized, confirmed, married in a church and have 2 baptized kids. But I'm not a person who talks about God in regular, everyday life, and have a hard time feeling comfortable around those who do.

January 12, 2011 at 9:46 AM  
Blogger Julie said...

I am finding religion to be tricky nowadays, esp with me marrying a guy who is Catholic and I'm Methodist. I always knew I wanted to marry in my church and my fiance didn't care which church he was married in (he doesn't practice his religion "regularly" so to speak) but his mother had a heyday when it was announced we'd be marrying at my church. So we told her that if she wanted it in her church she'd have to pay for it - funny how money makes people run. So I hear where you are coming from and hope that you will eventually find your place at your church.

January 12, 2011 at 10:45 AM  
Blogger Pamela Gold said...

I would love to find a Bible Study near me but I fear that I too will be judged for being the outsider and not knowing enough about my religion to be there.

January 12, 2011 at 11:02 AM  
Blogger Kim said...

Oh, I have soooo been there. I will be praying for you. I hope you have a good time. Meet new women and build on your relationship with God. :)

January 12, 2011 at 11:18 AM  
Blogger Evonne said...

I can't think of a time where I ever felt I fit in at Church or religious based gatherings. I think part of that is the judging (by myself and others), but I think part is me not really knowing where I stand on religion.

Good for you for giving it another try, but I also think the rest of the group needs to work on accepting everyone, new or old.

January 12, 2011 at 11:20 AM  
Blogger Ashley said...

Oh I feel your pain. I hate that that happened. I'm sure those same ladies didn't even realize they were being exclusive and I bet they'd be appalled to find out how you felt. Hopefully, this time will go better.

I grew up in church and Sundays were always such family time. After I married, moved a few hours away, and my husband had to work on Sundays, I would visit churches. I quickly realized the church can be the lonliest place in the world for those who slip through the cracks. Those two years were a very spiritually dry place. Praying the new Bible study goes well!

January 12, 2011 at 11:40 AM  
Blogger Amy said...

Good for you for being able to see what happened in that experience. And maybe you'll be the kind soul who finds the loner this time around and God will help you use the experience for good.

January 12, 2011 at 11:48 AM  
Blogger RJ said...

I've definitely felt the same way. I often care more of what others think than of what God thinks. It's so much easier to believe the bad than the good (why is that).

Our life group is reading Grochel's book THE CHRISTIAN ATHEIST (sounds like the sermon is similar) and it is AMAZING. Short, easy to read, convicting, encouraging ... I can't recommend it enough!

January 12, 2011 at 11:55 AM  
Blogger Kir said...

I always think of what others think of me, I have not gone back to lots of places because I felt Judged or did the judging and let it get the better of me.

GOOD FOR YOU for trying a 2nd time...for trying again. You're awesome in so many ways :)
Good luck...

January 12, 2011 at 12:07 PM  
Blogger MommyLisa said...

It is funny how we don't, as a society, find it okay to talk about church and religion - but they make a BIG DEAL out of it for politicians and they show them going to church, etc. Especially the President.

Faith is personal, but my religion teaches to share your faith and bring others with you to church. I only wish I felt I could.

January 12, 2011 at 12:08 PM  
Blogger Emmy said...

So sorry :( Why do we do that as grown ups? Seriously, you think we could be past the clicks and high school pettiness.

I hope this time it is a wonderful experience for you.

January 12, 2011 at 12:14 PM  
Blogger Gigi said...

I so identify with how you feel. I've been there. I commend you for going back in and trying again. You'll find a connection, I hope, with some other woman and back with God, too.

January 12, 2011 at 12:41 PM  
Blogger Kmama said...

Good for you in going back. It takes a lot of strength to put yourself in an awkward situation on purpose.

January 12, 2011 at 12:54 PM  
Blogger Diane said...

Stepping out of my comfort zone, even when I feel God calling me to do so, is something I am constantly battling with.
Congrats for having the courage to try again

January 12, 2011 at 12:54 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

What an honest post! 300+ ladies?? That's intimidating. I'm praying for a peaceful experience tomorrow!

January 12, 2011 at 12:57 PM  
Blogger Fields said...

Sometimes I go to church and feel like a total stranger and like no one really knows me. It gets me down. You are right though. I need to worry about what God thinks!

January 12, 2011 at 12:59 PM  
Blogger Katie Hurley, LCSW said...

I hate that cliques still exist. We tell our kids to play nice, but then we turn around and act like that.

Good for you for going back.

January 12, 2011 at 12:59 PM  
Blogger Macey said...

Um. Did you pull this out of my brain? I've been struggling with this VERY SAME ISSUE for months.
And my pastor is doing a series about that same thing!!!! Weird?!

January 12, 2011 at 1:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

300 plus women? wow! That is a very large bible study.

Dont worry, you are fabulous! They will all soon realize that and be clamoring to join your group!

January 12, 2011 at 1:28 PM  
Blogger Heather said...

I am so sorry that was your experience.

I have been there too.

I don't know the answer, but I am stubborn...and I figured I would just keep showing up until people had no choice but to talk to me.

Still...you are right. Those people should not have been my focus while I was there.

Great reminder. THank you and good luck this semester.

January 12, 2011 at 1:43 PM  
Anonymous Making It Work Mom said...

Good for you for trying again. Sometimes people act without thinking so caught up in what feels good for them. Hopefully this experience will be better and you can help the group change some of their practices for future newbies!

January 12, 2011 at 2:33 PM  
Blogger natalee said...

Oh sweetie I can sooo relate.. I went to our new parishes "mom tea" and I felt so alone... I ended up sneaking out early getting my nails done.. then lying to my hubby and sisters that it was amazing...

January 12, 2011 at 2:41 PM  
Blogger The Nice One said...

This is sort of why I don't go to church. I know...most people don't get it. But I have such a deep spirituality...it frequently gets killed when I spend time with my uber churchy friends. I know....

January 12, 2011 at 3:13 PM  
Blogger Sara said...

I'm sorry that happened. I really hate that crap.

It's funny how church, which is supposed to be based on open doors and welcoming new people, can be one of the most exclusive places out there.

I think you're a tough lady for trying again.

January 12, 2011 at 3:26 PM  
Blogger Eternal Lizdom said...

Don't beat yourself up too much. Because part of the Christian values that I live is practicing radical hospitality- not only towards other people but also in my intimate relationship with God. There should have been someone in that room who wanted to love the way God does and exhibit some of His grace by welcoming you and helping you to feel included. Hopefully the experience is better this time around- and if it isn't, try some other way of getting involved because it could be that God has something else He wants you to be doing to get involved in your church community and you're just working really hard to ignore those whispers...

January 12, 2011 at 4:07 PM  
Blogger Crystal said...

Through your entire story I was getting more and more anxious. I hate situations like that and instead of powering through, maybe making a friend....I don't go, I sit at home. I don't attend bible studies anymore for that exact reason! Crazy.

January 12, 2011 at 4:17 PM  
Blogger CK said...

Wow, thank you for sharing. I really did feel heart in this post. It is so nice to connect with other women like you. You are amazing. Good luck at the new bible school and I'm not worried at all that you won't find a friend. A friend will be there, though it make take a few times to find her. And God will be there, too, for sure.

January 12, 2011 at 4:19 PM  
Blogger MrsJenB said...

I can completely relate, and I understand how you feel regarding your reaction - HOWEVER, I feel like someone, anyone, could have made you feel welcome. Sounds a bit cliquey to me. That's not completely Christian either.

Best of luck trying again!!

January 12, 2011 at 4:27 PM  
Blogger gmontalvo13 said...

glad you're giving it a second try! and love your reasoning! good luck, hope you find what you're looking for!

January 12, 2011 at 4:38 PM  
Blogger Mandy said...

I think many of us can relate to that feeling of being so lonely in a group of Christians.. in my opinion, that should NEVER happen. I pray that God leads you back so that YOU can be that welcoming, loving, warm person for a newbie the next time.. sometimes we can't be used by God for what he intends in situations, until he's put us in that other person's shoes. No doubt, he'll bless you for going for SEEKING HIM.. not seeking THEM. :)

January 12, 2011 at 4:51 PM  
Blogger Mimi N said...

Dang, I could've done this PYHO post today and I forgot! Ugh...now I don't have time to do one...maybe. I could probably do it quickly and it would have to do with faith too. Grrr

I started a Bible Study this Fall and was so thankful I had friends from my church there because it's at a church that has ladies from tons of different churches and I'd know NO ONE! I hope that God blesses you with at least one person who reaches out!


January 12, 2011 at 5:04 PM  
Blogger bohomamasoul said...

This hit so close to home for me, because I would've reacted in exactly the same manner. And I know how bad that is, seeing as how Bible Study is a chance for me to grow in my relationship with Christ, not in my relationships with other women. But it would've made me feel judged, as I sat there and judged, and I would've probably walked out. So hey, you stayed and that's a win in my book!

Anyway, I am so in awe of your honesty here; and I'm even more in awe of the act of returning for the new session of Bible Study. THAT is such an incredible movement in the direction of the Lord and His plan for you. I don't know if I'd be able to do it! You are definitely my hero today, my dear!

January 12, 2011 at 5:16 PM  
Blogger Hutch said...

Good for you! I firmly believe everyone has their own way of working on/solidifying their relationship with whatever higher being you think is out there. Glad to hear you're going back to what you want to do and trying again!

Also, large groups of women can be intimidating. Breaking down those barriers alone should be considered as a triumph!

January 12, 2011 at 6:12 PM  
Blogger Liz Mays said...

That's exactly the kind of thing I would do. I'm glad you recognized it and are pushing through it.

January 12, 2011 at 6:14 PM  
Blogger Kelly said...

When we moved from PA,(it is a friendly place, isn't it?!)I had the same exact experience.

Glad to hear you are giving it another shot. I'm sure you will be so glad that you did!

January 12, 2011 at 6:26 PM  
Anonymous Kimberly said...

Me and God are not cool at the moment. I am angry over lots of things. Some day I will want to return.
Good for you though. You shouldn't let them push you out of what you wanted to do. It's their loss if they don't want to get to know you ;)

January 12, 2011 at 6:27 PM  
Blogger MommaKiss said...

You'd never guess it about me but I'm very faithful. I hope you get to go tomorrow. I'll be thinking about ya.

January 12, 2011 at 6:56 PM  
Blogger adrienzgirl said...

I meant to link up with you today. You didn't have your post up when I posted, and then I forgot to go back and add it. *sigh*

Anyway...we all let other discourage us sometimes. Don't you worry about them. You are loved. God loves and you and so do we! Mwah!

January 12, 2011 at 8:55 PM  
Blogger Tami G said...

That was a GREAT pour your heart out post - I really enjoyed it. and can TOTALLY relate.

Also stopping by to invite you to my newest bloggie adventure...
brutal honesty..
pouring my heart out ALL THE TIME.

Stop by! :)

January 12, 2011 at 9:04 PM  
Blogger Sandra said...

Wow Shell, that is one big Bible study group! It would be intimidating for most anybody.
Good for you though for giving it a go once again.
I have to admit, I'm not Christian, but I go to my friend's Bible study with her because I enjoy the commaraderie. Those women are terrific. You'll find your place this time, I'm certain of it.

January 12, 2011 at 10:51 PM  
Blogger The Bama Gardener said...

Wow. Hard stuff! You are a brave woman! Praying for you!

Thanks for stopping by my blog and helping to make my SITS day a wonderful one!

January 12, 2011 at 11:17 PM  
Blogger Simoney said...

Good on you Shell.
I know how hard that can be.
I'm linking up again.
Here's hoping the snow holds off so you can get there :)

January 13, 2011 at 12:43 AM  
Blogger Nancy C said...

It took me TEN YEARS to get over myself and finally find a church that was about my relationship with God, not with others.

And go figure, the human relationships came anyway. God is funny like that.

January 13, 2011 at 7:20 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

What you write about above is why I never do Bible study. But the church I found that allowed me to finally have a relationship with God in a way that I felt comfortable was with the PNCC (Polish National Catholic Church). Something about the priest being allowed to be married and have children made it easier to find comfort and strength there every week.
I also finally came back to God after a particular experience when I was trying to conceive. A lady pointed me (out of nowhere) to a spot in the church where two miracles had occured, I prayed for the first time in years to God, for forgiveness and just told him I wanted a child but didn't know what to do anymore. Got pregnant that week. The second baby, I was cleaning the alter for Easter & looked up, smiled and said "I would like another baby, but I know it's in your hands". Again, pregnant that week! God works in mysterious ways.
I wanted to thank you for doing this "Pour Your Heart Out" post. When I wrote mine, I almost didn't submit it. I even went to bed fully anticipating hatred, insults, and I-don't-know-what in reaction to it. Thank you all for reading it, commenting your support, even those who never experienced that. You have no idea how much that meant!

January 13, 2011 at 8:42 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Oh yay! You went back!

It is hard, though, to be part of a church where you haven't found your niche (and I think an important part of every church is to make everyone feel like family).

January 13, 2011 at 8:45 AM  
Blogger Casey said...

I have been in that position a few times. There are times where I need to live more for what God think than what others do. I am a work in progress

January 13, 2011 at 10:14 AM  
Blogger Tiffany said...

Your story reminded me of when I was a teenager and my parents joined a new church. They decided that each of us kids would also go to Sunday School before service. I already had self esteem issues and walking into that class the first day was horrible. All the kids knew each other and when I walked into that room they stopped talking and stared at me. I found a seat in the back of the room and was so nervous that I wanted to throw up. I couldn't wait to get out of that room and can't even remember what the pastor talked about it that class. I never went back.
It's horrible that we allow that to happen to us and let that kind of thing get in the reason we are there. But we're human. I'm glad you are going back. Good for you. I'll be thinking about you.

January 13, 2011 at 10:17 AM  
Anonymous Craig said...


Yours is the kind of heart that God wants to sit next to at a Bible study.

That you are trying again - I think that's why God wants to sit next to you. :)

God bless you Shell.

January 13, 2011 at 12:29 PM  
Blogger Joey Lynn Resciniti said...

I haven't been to our church since before Halloween because of similar feelings about people in a group I was involved with. It's not so much caring what they think of me, but not enjoying my time with them. Somehow I think God understands that there are certain people we respect and love as sisters in Christ, but still don't want to spend our free time with.

January 13, 2011 at 12:48 PM  
Blogger Rachel @ The Lazy Christian said...

Thank you for sharing this. I go to a giant church, so there are a lot of times I have to walk into situations like that. If there's no one being that friendly person at the door, sometimes I'll fill that role---but not always. Depends on the group, so I guess I'm not as outgoing as I think. lol At least you know the feeling of being left out, so maybe you'll be the one willing to be friendly to others. Let God use you! :)

January 13, 2011 at 4:01 PM  
Blogger Tracie Nall said...

I'm so glad you shared this. I have a hard time breaking into groups in social situations. I would have made the same judgements that you did if that had happened to me, and probably not gone back.

It is so good to be reminded that as wonderful as it is for a Bible study to open up friendships, that is a bonus. The study and growth that you get is the point.

January 13, 2011 at 5:39 PM  
Blogger Maggi said...

Oh boy, have I been here before! lol I'm glad you're going back and I hope this time you'll find a place you can grow in and belong to! Good luck!

January 13, 2011 at 6:47 PM  
Blogger HopefulLeigh said...

Do I ever relate to this! I'm part of a wonderful Bible study group but my community small group has been really tough for me. I'm the only single amongst married couples and a few of the couples just don't know how to relate to me because of it. It's frustrating and I find myself coming up with excuses not to go. In fact, I should be headed there right now but I'm not. I'm trying to persevere because I feel like this could be a good group in the end. And you're right, it's not about how other people view or treat me, it's about what God can teach me through it.

January 13, 2011 at 7:36 PM  
Blogger Michelle @Flying Giggles said...

That is a hard situation to be in. Being the new one is rough, especially when no one makes you feel welcome. Way to go for giving it a try again! I am sure there will be other newbies you will hit it off with.

January 13, 2011 at 11:02 PM  
Blogger Loukia said...

You are not alone! I feel insecure quite often in social settings, especially where I don't really know anyone. And it's so hard to not think that way even though now we're adults, you know? I go through this with blogging, too.

January 14, 2011 at 12:20 AM  
Blogger AiringMyLaundry said...

I know how you feel. I've never felt comfortable in a church. Perhaps I'll try again in a few years.

January 14, 2011 at 12:22 AM  
Blogger Cyndy Bush said...

I'm so proud of you for trying again. That's awesome and it does take courage.
I don't go to church on Wednesday nights because my husband works. My older kids could watch my little kids, plus they provide childcare. My church is very small and intimate. It's a pathetic excuse to not go; I'm lame, I know.
Now you've got me thinking though!

January 14, 2011 at 3:35 AM  
Blogger For the Love of Naps - Sarah said...

Good for you Shell, for giving it another go. It is so easy to get wrapped up in all the things that bothered you and miss out on something incredible. I hope your experience this time around goes better. Sometimes it takes a time or two to get settled and maybe you can suggest the greeter and start a new AWESOME trend.

January 14, 2011 at 9:31 AM  
Blogger Joann Mannix said...

Oh, honey, we are one and the same. I would have done the very same thing. How brave of you to take that lesson, apply it to your heart and attempt it again.

I wish you all the luck in the world.

And I'm holed up in my bedroom, trying to find a little peace from the senior citizens in my life, catching up on my blogs.

January 14, 2011 at 12:23 PM  
Blogger MommyToTwoBoys said...

This is a great post. I loved reading your thoughts, thank you for being so honest. I think so many of us feel this way but are too ashamed to admit it, or just don't want to relive the bad memory.

Sounds silly, but this is how I felt the first few weeks of my sons' gymnastics class, you know the little My Gym places? And slowly I weasled my way into the group. Then, as each new mom joined I made it a point to welcome them, not tell little side stories and secrets that made them feel left out. I tried to remember what it was like to walk in as the "new mom" and ease their awkwardness. It felt good, really good.

Good for you for going back! I look forward to hearing how it goes!

January 14, 2011 at 1:11 PM  
Blogger TheBabyMammaChronicles said...

Good for you! I totally have been there so many times. It's hard. And it should be aboug community. Those ladies are missing out though if they don't befriend you!

January 15, 2011 at 1:35 PM  
Blogger Jill said...

Unfortunate. It's human nature and has nothing to do with religion. Good for you trying again but there are other ways to connect with God and spirituality than putting up with bs at a Bible group if you don't want to put up with that.

January 15, 2011 at 3:02 PM  
Blogger shortmama said...

I honestly would have done the same thing. It is very intimating when you feel uncomfortable in that way. I had been putting off going to a homeschool playgroup because I was feeling intimidated. I thought everyone has been in the group and live near each other and I dont. and what if they are judgemental because my reasons for choosing homeschool may be different then theirs? You know what? I finally did it this past Monday and wished I had done it earlier. It went really well and everyone was very welcoming...and I realized that our differences didnt matter, we were all there for the purpose of our kids

January 15, 2011 at 6:22 PM  
Blogger mypixieblog said...

Awwww, Shell. I know what you mean. I hate feeling like this myself and it can be discouraging so I understand why you wouldn't want to return... but you're making the right call. You are choosing the importance of your relationship with God over what these women think. Even still, I really hope you meet some supportive women in your Bible Study who make you feel welcomed. It's important and will help you build a sense of community which will encourage you to return :)

January 18, 2011 at 11:49 AM  
Blogger . said...

Wow! 300 Christian women in one room! That could have felt really amazing. But that would be a hard way to foster real relationships and connect in the name of Christ. Small, intimate groups can be such a blessing. I hope the next study goes far better.

January 23, 2011 at 4:21 PM  

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