kindred spirits

You know when you meet someone and immediately "click" with them? As if you've known them for years, even if you've only just said hello. Something in you recognizes something in them, and your very soul rises up to meet theirs? L.M. Montgomery called these people "kindred spirits," and finding one is a true joy. I've written before about how difficult it can be for me to make friends - this is something I've struggled with all my life, questioning whether there isn't a flaw in my own character that makes it so difficult for me to really connect with people. This is difficult for me, an odd mixture of shyness, a desperate need to be liked and that basic extroverted demand for social contact to recharge me. In marriage, I have found a best friend and playmate who meets so many of those needs, but I still find myself longing for girlfriends and other social interaction.

Since Karl and I moved to DC, we've spent a lot of time looking for a church home - trying each church for several months before ultimately deciding it wasn't the right place for us, and moving to the next. Both of us have been frustrated with this, and wanting greatly to find where God wanted us to be. Within the last two months, we've found ourselves suddenly a part of a "church plant" in the local area, currently made up of about twenty folks.  Sundays have become one long playtime, with lunch together and church services and often boardgames or talking until late at night.  All of a sudden, we have friends to share with, talk to, cry with, and plan outings and activities with... it is exactly what I believe was meant in Acts 2, and what Christian community should look like.

I struggle occasionally with doubt and despair, and with the weight of my burdens every day - having kindred spirits surrounding me now gives me strength, and peace, and hope for where we are now and where God is taking us. Even being so far from family now doesn't hurt quite as sharply as it did just eight weeks ago. Thank God for answered prayers!

*As a side note, I am writing this from just outside LA where I'm putting on a conference for work, and one of the attendees - whom I'd never met before - just struck up a conversation with me that sequed seamlessly into a discussion of Christ in marriage, church planting, and spiritual growth. Neither of us know each other, neither of us said anything outright to indicate our spiritual state, but somehow... we just knew. Family, recognizing family. I just LOVE that.


Melgodspell said...

I don't think shyness should be viewed as a character flaw, but rather as a different way of being. Sometimes I think that the shy people are actually capable of much deeper relationships than people who just make friends at the drop of a hat. If it's harder for you to make friends, chances are when you make one it will be for a lifetime and you will really appreciate them. I also think shyness tends to go hand in hand with being a good listener, which is all too rare in this world.

Truly God understands the desires of our hearts and He always sends us exactly what we need...

Melgodspell said...

P.S. Melgodspell is me (Melissa James)