This morning was our second morning into Baby S's first four-day weekend away from home. We won't see him again until Monday.
I thought church without Baby for the first time would be a dramatic and sad thing. But it wasn't at all what I pictured.
It wasn't what I pictured, because I am part of a church that is more than just a bunch of people showing up to check off "listened to a sermon" from their weekly chore list. I'm surrounded by people who love Jesus and love people. I'm surrounded by people who care. I'm surrounded by people who really mean it when they say "I've been praying for you guys."
I'm surrounded by people who have never hesitated to pour deeply into Baby S. I'm surrounded by people who really do understand what we are going through, because they've allowed themselves to love him deeply and are now journeying through his return alongside us.
I'm surrounded by people who work with kids and families every day of the week through many different roles, fighting for healing in the homes in our neighborhoods and in our city.
I can't fully express how amazing it is to be part of a church that is not a building where a bunch of people meet, but rather, a family of people living and growing together every day of the week (who happen to have a dedicated meeting space).
If you're not part of something like this, please consider it. If you've only known church to be a place for the good people, try again. There is something incredible about a group of broken people loving Jesus together. Something amazing about a family that cares so deeply that I barely went five minutes at a time this morning without a hug, an "I'm praying," and an acknowledgement that my little guy was missed today.
Church is why I can do this and know I'll make it through. God's people are the reason I know it will be okay.
If you don't have people like that in your life, I'll gladly share some of mine. They're a pretty awesome crowd and I know they'd love to meet you.