Five years ago you never would have convinced me I would regularly attend a bible study. In fact five years ago you may not have convinced me I'd be going to church regularly. The Lord's plans truly supersede our expectations in ways I will certainly never understand. To look back and see the fraction of His plan we are capable of seeing, and to know that He was there guiding and shaping me, is truly humbling.
It all started about four years ago. My wife was pregnant with our first child, and we both agreed it was time to find a church where we felt at home. Joy and I grew up in very different backgrounds, I was raised Catholic and thought the traditional service was what I was looking for, and Joy and her family were never tied down to a denomination, but it seemed she was hoping for the opposite. We had tried in the past to find a church that offered a contemporary service with some traditional aspects, and while we found a place we didn't mind, we never felt at home there.
Now with Mary on her way and both Joy and I having a desire to raise her to know Jesus, we turned to the only place we knew of to find a church...Google. We searched for churches nearest to our apartment, and just around the corner was Christian Fellowship Church. The next day we attended, and as soon as we walked in the door were greeted by a very excited youth pastor, David Pound. Dave introduced us to his wife and seemed very excited to have us join the day's service. Pastor Dick preached and both my wife and I were excited to return the following week.
Joy had the baby, and we took a few weeks off from church. When we returned a few weeks passed and Dave invited us to lunch with him and his wife. He filled us in on what CFC was all about (in a nutshell anyway) and some ministry opportunities. I passed and said we were too busy with the baby, but I really just wanted to keep to myself and just attend Sunday services. Dave doesn't give up, and a couple months later I started his Discipleship program.
As our relationship grew, I expressed a desire to start a Bible study for young adults. My sister in law was living with us at the time and I thought she needed something to help her grow and somewhere where she could meet others Christians her age. Some time passed and Dave came back with another idea for a study, not for young adults, but for young families. He had been a part of a young adult bible study a few years before and wanted to create a study where those young adults who had had children could come and grow, and bring the kids. Dave invited to me to help shape the study and before long we were meeting every other week.
The only people Joy and I knew were Dave and his wife, and I found this to be a little intimidating. Within a few months all of that had passed. As our group grew together I got to know the other members and relationships formed. Our group has grown quite a bit, even split into two separate groups, but there is still a family feel that I love so much. I love the other kids, and enjoy playing with them, and I love to watch Mary play with them and grow up with them. I truly feel like I am a part of a family when we sit down to share a meal, and fellowship, and as we grow in the word together.
God had a plan for me at CFC and he used this Bible study family to get the ball rolling. It is incredible how well God knows us, He knows what it takes to change our hearts and minds. He knew what I needed and how badly I needed it, even though I didn't think I needed anything at all.