Wednesday, 6 April 2016

Appreciate Your Tribe

I am blessed to be surrounded by a diverse group of people who all love and support me. And it has really been at the forefront of my thoughts lately what a great gift this is.

I have mentioned before my immediate and extended family.  And some friends that have stuck by me through thick and thin.

Lately I've been thinking about my Mom's group.  I have taken over leadership of the group after a friend and her family relocated. I feel so uncomfortable calling myself a leader. If you knew me, you would understand that for me, any group larger than 2 (me and one other person) is a challenge.  I don't do well in groups.  I actually spend most of my time in my house avoiding groups of people.  And yet I was called to do just that. I think God laughs at my plans once again.

The funny thing?  It's forcing me to grow in ways I never thought I would.  I now pray for people in front of a group of people. Talk about uncomfortable. My prayer life has always been a very private thing for me.  God and me.  That makes 2. Pretty much my limit.

I lead discussions. Me. The one who almost never spoke during the weekly discussions before, even though I've been a part of this group for almost 4 years now.  And now I'm usually the first to go. Mainly because everyone else waits for me to start...but I do it!

And these women are so different. Growing up in different provinces and countries.  Different decades. Different everything. And yet they show up week after week, to do life with me. They offer me advice and perspectives before that I've never considered. They are my tribe, and for better or worse, they are there for each other. Through child rearing debacles, sickness, marital discord, family issues.  And we don't always see eye to eye.  Really, when you get a group of women together, how often do they all truly agree?  But I hope I can continue the pattern of respect, openness and support that was started by my predecessor.  And that God would help me to add even a portion to these women's lives as they have given me.

I don't know if you have a tribe. Maybe you have the perfect mix of support in your life.  Maybe you're struggling to connect on a deeper level.  I pray that He would bring in women who will have your back.  Who will challenge you to grow, even when you don't want to.  And who will show you grace and acceptance no matter what.