I was ROCKING the country music in the truck today on the way to and from Care Group (i.e., Bible Study). I mean, “Mud On the Tires” and “What I Love About Sunday” are just 2 very awesome songs, and they beg to be belted by a wannabe country music star like me.
Here’s the thing: DC has a very serious lack of country music radio stations, and a grave dearth of country music listeners. So, when I’m belting out the romanticism of The South (capital “T,” Capital “S”), and I pull up next to a little faded red coupe carrying some spanish speaking dudes listening to spanish-singing music, I am totally the minority. Because I look around, and the small, faded, red coupes are everywhere! And they’re all blaring rap, spanish rock, or some variation of the two. It’s then that I know I am a country holdout.
I never thought I was a Southerner, exactly. Not officially. But living here and missing home has brought out the Southern in me. I now defend grits as though they are my blood relative. Apparently I’m also in the same family tree as Chick-fil-A and Publix. When I see a Florida license tag, I wave. Yes, really. And if I meet someone with a Southern accent, I immediately strike up a conversation which is, in my mind, bound and destined for success at the utmost level of intimate friendship based simply on the fact that I think I’m some kind of country girl.
Sigh… If only I were truly Southern, and not a native of South Florida – which is really just Yankee-ville on medicaid.
I think there’s a defense mechanism in my sudden renewal of Country-music-belting. But what am I defending against?
I am at the point of no return.
No, no, I don’t mean to say I won’t ever return to Tallahassee, or that I don’t want to. (What, Mike? We can move tomorrow? I’ll have the house packed in 2 hours…). But what I mean is this: I. am. growing. content.
GASP! UGGGH! N00o! Content??! The enemy of Florida! The bane of “home-ness!” Content??! How? In this forsaken city of crazies? In this country-music-less wasteland?
Have no fear! My sin is fighting contentment with every fiber of its evil little being. But I realized something tonight that is both good and bad: I am in danger, right now, of falling more in love with God’s people than I am with God Himself. I have become quite smitten with the people I’ve met through church, and found myself thinking at Care Group tonight: if/when we move away, it won’t be hard to leave this city, but it will be hard to leave these people. Not only them, but the friends I’ve made and am making through work… though not of the same faith, we are kindred spirits, and I find myself growing quite attached. Uh-oh… this sounds like contentment creeping up again…Better squash it with some complaining…
Then again, I don’t want contentment to come from God’s people or God’s blessings in my life. I want to be content in whatever circumstance God has me – I want God to be enough, to be in love with Him more than I am with what He can give me (i.e., amazing friends).
It also seems God is stretching me. Learning to be content is too simple. I must learn to be content in evolving circumstances… He knows I don’t like change. I don’t handle it well. Yet, here’s a little snapshot of my life over the last year:
August: moved to DC. [Friends = 0]
October: finally settled on Covenant Life Church. [Friends = 0]
January: finished the membership class. We have met approximately 2 people. [Friends = 1?]
March: Join the Blacker’s Care Group [Friends = Many!]
July: New Care Group, meeting in Arlington – 3 couples from old care group, 3 from new. [Friends = Many!]
We came from Florida, where we had a great church, friends, workplaces, etc, to a city where we knew… Adam. That’s it. One person. He was (and is) a huge blessing to us, but every woman needs a female friend with whom she can build an intimate friendship. We settled into church, joined a Care Group, and promptly switched to another Care Group 3 months later (we knew that was coming, because the new group was formed for us “Virginians” of the church). As briefly as I fellowshipped with the members of the other Care Group, I already miss seeing them on a weekly basis, and I am itching to develop deep relationships with my new Care Group members.
In the interim, however, I just feel CHANGE. I feel in limbo, and yet I feel God’s grace and sovereign providence. I am not afraid, nor am I bitter or unhappy (most of the time). I simply feel like God won’t let me get comfortable. And I think He’s teaching me something. If only He’d give me a syllabus and let me work ahead. I’m an overachiever, and I don’t like this not knowing what I should be learning. Part of the learning, I know, is being content with not knowing what I should be learning…in other words, being CONTENT. There’s that word again. Being content no matter what, with whatever God does to me, or whatever He does or does not give me.
These were my thoughts tonight. Falling in love with God’s people = sweet. Seeing God’s fruit in my life, and learning = Hard but good. Growing content = scary.
I had to get this out. It’s midnight, but maybe now I can quiet my mind and my heart, pray a little, and go to sleep. I’ll post another blog soon with pictures of Matthew and Natalie’s visit here (they’re here now, and I’m loving it).