Seasons change and what worked in one season may not work in the next.
This year it has been hard to start my Praise and Coffee group up again. The flu was sweeping through our community and our families schedule has been crazy. So, I thought maybe this was just a season of sitting and resting. As I have rested I began to reflect on my own evolution in leadership.
As a young twenty something I volunteered to go to a class in order to become a Eucharistic Minister onboard the ship I was attached to during the build up of the Iraq War. It was an honor to be able to share prayers at taps (bedtime) with the whole crew and lead Sunday morning mass with my fellow believers.
Upon returning to San Diego I began dating my future husband and we got involved in a local college ministry. We attended classes on Christian fundamentals but, since I was still on active duty and in college full time my leadership in ministry took a hiatus.
Once we were married and we had our son a shift in my heart began and a need in our community caused me to start leading a moms group in our home. The need was too great to fill in our home with a bunch of toddlers running around so, I found a local coffee shop with an indoor playground.
The transition from season to season began to flow easily especially with a supportive husband. As our son grew the group of women I was leading became smaller and more intimate. We met at a local coffee shop once a week and eventually around my table on the same night my son had baseball practice. It was a win-win in our home.
This brings me to my current season in life where my son is no longer in a traditional school and he is now participating in two sports. The shift at home has not been easy and having a regular Praise and Coffee night has become difficult.
There are different seasons in life but, for me connecting with women in my community is a priority and I can tell when that has not been prioritized in my life. This is also a tricky season of wanting to teach my son how to engage in community outside the Sunday morning meeting. So, this morning when I was praying and the idea of brunch and basketball came to mind, my heart leapt with joy!
It is the perfect combination for our season of life. Mom’s gathering around the table while the teens play basketball outside. I get the opportunity to connect with other women and he gets the opportunity to play with his friends.
So, why share this if it is not a public event?
The truth is we all have needs in our own lives and stages. Sometimes it is easier to wait for someone else to come up with a solution instead of designing your own way of connecting, encouraging and inspiring. This is why Praise and Coffee has been so impactful in my life. It is NOT a one size fits all ministry. At the heart it is connecting women to encourage one another and inspiring them to draw closer to God. No format, curriculum or set of rules.
What is your need in this season of life?
What is your heart longing for right now?
If connection is something you are desiring then maybe it’s time to start something in your community. It may not be brunch & basketball but, maybe a bookclub, painting group or coffee with girlfriends. I encourage you to figure out what you need and then share the idea with a couple of girlfriends because in my experience if I am feeling a need in my own life I am usually not the only one desiring something more.
My hope and pray is for women to connect with women in their community right where they are at in life. When we wait for someone else to come up with a solution for our needs we can become bitter, disconnected and discontent. Let’s be a generation of women who make connection a priority no matter what we are struggling with in our own lives. Open your homes (or meet at Starbucks) and begin to build a community of supportive and encouraging women!
For more ideas check out our Praise and Coffee resources page.