Life can be separated by many different generic stages. Childhood / Young Adult / Adult/ Senior. Pre-college / College / Post college. Single / Married. Pre-kids / Post-kids / Post-grand-kids. Jobs / Career. Today I came upon the idea that I can also break my life into chapters based on church. We worshiped with our Goddaughter and her family at the church we transferred from about a year ago, and sitting there was a very pleasant reminder to me of where I've been.
So far I have spent most of my life in three different churches. For most of my childhood I attended the same church, which I almost now consider my parents' church. I find it kind of odd that I view it that way, since I went through first communion, confirmation, graduation, and my wedding at that church, which encompasses about half of my life. But I guess in all things, once you're an adult you feel more ownership of the things that you do, rather than just being a tag-along. So that church now, which was such a constant for so many years, has become Chapter 1.
Present day, Chapter 3, we are at a new, well, new to us, church. We have been there about a year, and really just starting to get more involved and take ownership of our role as members. It will be the first church my son remembers, and maybe even the one he looks back on and dubs his parents' church. Chapter 2, then, is the church we visited today. That was the first church my husband and I joined together after we were married. I think we were there about six years, until a few months after our son was baptized. I sat there looking around and couldn't help but think about the people we were during the time we spent there. What was happening, how we lived, who we spent time with. I sat with my little blessing on my lap, staring at the same cross at the front of the church that I stared at for all those prayers to bring him safely into our lives.
The person staring at each of those three different crosses at the front of each church is so very different. The first was filled with the confusion and distraction of everything that goes into growing up. The second was consumed with marriage and home ownership and work and family. Well, I supposed the third is currently consumed with the same types of thoughts, but at a different stage. I'm not quite the newbie to any of that anymore like I was then. But I recognize now what I didn't then, that things are happening. Now that the book is a little longer, there are more chapters to show me where this story is going.