I notice that the idea of "community" has passed by me regularly and often this year. I tend toward home-body-ness, and I do believe that we need to be home to home school. (Soccer season *kills* me, and we don't even have separate practice and games yet).
I've been thinking about community quite a bit, actually. We're active in our church, but the church property was chosen (so I understand) because it was pretty much central to the original membership as they were (and we are) spread about the city ... and we're about 30 minutes away. Church friends who are local have moved away (Hi Tullys) and friends have moved here (Hi Mahers). We would like to be part of our city, but aren't from here originally, don't work here, don't belong to church here, and don't have our children in the schools. How do we become a part of the community?
This past weekend, Tara Barthel spoke at our Presbytery's Women's Retreat. Can I just say, she was spectacular!?!?! She was speaking about, not surprisingly, Peacemaking Women. And it was so good. So encouraging. So gospel-filled -focused -centered. (one of my favorite quotes, and there were many, "People aren't thinking about you nearly as much as you're thinking about them thinking about you." ) Isolation was an issue that seemed to come up a bunch, and loneliness. And I wondered, am I not the only one that feels isolated and apart from fellowship of the church family?
Anyway, one of my thoughts during her presentations was about community. Peacemaking is related to conflict. If there's no conflict, there's no need to make peace with others. There's no need to encourage one another to Godliness. There's no ability to help one another turn from sin. If there's no real community, if we aren't living together as a family, we don't really have conflicts. I'm not saying we have to live next door, but real contact (not just Facebook, which I do actually find helpful for knowing the believers better) on a day to day basis (not just "Hi, how are you doing?" in passing in the hall on the Lord's Day).
OK, so some of the goals are: 1. I want to work harder at planning play time with friends for the children and for Mommy ... here or there. 2. My friend Amanda who occasionally comments here (but I know she lurks) and I had talked about trying to do a PreK Classical Conversations like coop, gathering, play time, *something* for the children. I should start working toward that. 3. I want to make a more concerted effort to have people over to enjoy dinner/an evening/a football game/etc. with us.
What are some other ways to 1) be part of a local community (i.e. our city) and 2) be less isolated from our church family?