I was just reading Sandra's blog, and realised that hey, I actually know this person! This most eloquent of bloggers is actually in my orbit of people I know.
And it made me think - this time last year, Marie and I were somewhat on the retreat from close-knit community, while at the same time very aware it was what we needed.
Now, without us trying particularly hard, we find ourselves in community again. It's very satisfying.
There's the Crossover team, where Sandra comes in - and Adam, and Robyn. Neat people, passionate people. The kind of people you want to be around.
Then there's church - theSanctuary in Auckland. Thanks to Marie's work friend Michelle (who is quickly becoming a real close sister!) we're going regularly, because she needs a lift home from us afterwards! Good plan, God! Otherwise we would've never got around to getting regular.
And for this month only (while stocks last) I'm working at my old stomping ground, Rhema Broadcasting Group. I've got community coming out of my ears!
It's funny, the Crossover team aren't all Christians, but we have a surprising amount in common, given our widely divergent backgrounds. And what's really nice is we're fairly open-minded about each other's differences. I think it actually helps our creativity.
That doesn't change the fact I'd like everyone I know to know God personally. That doesn't equate to knowing or believing in exactly the same way I do, to make me feel validated. That's the baggage I've dropped on my journey through, and out of, the dysfunctional church scene.
Speaking of church, theSanctuary is a Godsend. They provide a hype-free zone, and focus on the heart issues. That's not to say they're perfect - I'd get freaked out if I visited the absolutely perfect church. But these guys get rid of some of the stuff that I find gets in the way of people connecting with God.
We had a great guest speaker on Saturday - the Princess of Tonga. Amazing lady, very much led by the Spirit and no slave to tradition. Very quiet, gentle, gracious and radiating an inner strength. So encouraging.
She encouraged anyone to whom it applied to know when a season of grieving was over, and move into what God had that was new for them. I think that was for us!