Had the first cottage meeting tonight to get to know the congregation at Trinity. This one was held in just across the Tarrant county line in far eastern Parker county (to the west of FW). The goal of these meetings is to get out into the communities in which the Trinity members actually live and have some time to get to know them in a relaxed, intimate setting. Tonight's meeting was all that and more.
We talked a bit, introduced ourselves and got to know each other better. Quickly going around the room with the 15+ participants we realized we had folks both young and old, members of Trinity dating back to the 1950's and those joining next weekend. This was truly a mixed group of folks who I am grateful took time to get to know one another better, and I think made some friends tonight.
After the initial get to know you we spent a bit reflecting on Spiritual Gifts and the work of the Spirit. Nothing too terribly heavy, but utilizing 1 Corinthians 12 we thought a bit about not only how we are all gifted, but also how those gifts can affect the Spirit of a place. Christ calls us to be of one body and sharing of one spirit. And in any community, family, individual that Spirit can be both good and strong, or the Spirit of a place can be negative and destructive. Stories were shared, both personal and corporate about how times of great hope had been replaced by sadness and loss, only to be regained by the gift of time and relationship.
Ultimately we came to a place of discussing how faith can give us a courageous spirit. One that is willing to step out into things that seem uncertain, possibilities that have no guarantee other than a promise. Truly a spirit inspired by God. While certainly a small sample size, the honest sharing, optimism, hope and community I experienced tonight gives me great hope for our work to come at Trinity. It took a sense of the spirit to take on this call, tonight (and this morning by the generous response to support our mission partners in Alvarado) that spirit was affirmed. Thanks be to God.