Chris Robinson shares how Life Groups have helped him see God's work in the little moments:
On the Monday before Valentine's Day, I went to Tom Thumb to pick up a card and flowers for my wife, Denise. I was just going through the normal grocery store routine when the lady working the checkout, Antoinita, began to talk to me.
As I listened to her, phrases she used struck a chord with me. She looked at the flowers and card and started talking about the blessings of my marriage: how beautiful the flowers are, how lucky my wife is and how blessed we are to have each other.
That small moment from a stranger was uplifting and encouraging, it carried me through the rest of the day. Things just seemed to go better with a start like that.
Six days later I met with my Life Group and was faced with the question, "How is your life with God?" I thought back on my week trying to figure out where I saw God, and this lady from Tom Thumb popped into my mind. Her outward kindness was symbolic of God's love. His angels are all around us if we just pay attention. So I shared the story with my Life Group.
After sharing, another person in our group said, "She was a blessing to me this week, too! I went through her line and I know who you're talking about. She was amazing."
And then a third person in the group added, "I went to Tom Thumb, too, and I got in her line. She brightened my day."
In a group of eight people, nearly half saw God's love in this one woman at Tom Thumb just by her words. Simple kindness can affect so many lives. It made me think about the great power God gives each of us to share His love. I was sitting in wonder, thinking about the impact we each can have on the world.
I woke up the following morning to go to work, and I decided to stop by the Tom Thumb to let this lady know about the impact she had on our group.
I found her and said, "I've been looking for you." Honestly, that kind of freaked her out and she looked at me wide-eyed like she was about to get chewed out or something. I told her what had occurred the night before in our Life Group and how humbling it was that three people recalled an interaction with her as their "God moment" of the week.
I told her, "I know you treat everybody that comes through your line like this and you may not realize it, but you’re blessing the lives of people by what you do every day." Antoinita was speechless. She started to tear up and talked about what a blessing this was for her.
I just wanted her to feel encouraged in the same way she made me feel encouraged and make sure she knows that she is making a difference in this world.
We ended on a hug.
Without Life Groups, I wouldn't have had this experience. I get so wrapped up in everyday life that I don't intentionally think about the God moments. If I had not been in a Life Group it wouldn't have changed what had happened in the store, but it would have changed how I thought about it or if I thought about it.
Life Groups have helped me to live more intentionally. When we first started meeting, I got better at reflecting on where I saw God in my week. Now I'm beginning to see God in the moment something happens. It's changed my whole mindset. I've learned that small moments with God matter, and I'm not too busy like I always thought I was.
I had a long way to go in growing my relationship with God when I came into the Life Group and I still have a long way to go, but I can see myself moving more towards God.
Life Groups are a safe place. You can share honestly about what you do believe or what you don't believe. Sometimes when asked, "How is my life with God?" my response is, "Honestly, this week I have nothing."
You don't have to be perfect to join a Life Group. Sometimes I feel uplifting and moving moments that can only come from God, like our group's collective experience with Antoinita. Sometimes God puts something beautiful right in front of me, and I miss it. But that's okay. God is working on me.
Give it a try. Come as you are, who you are, where you are and be loved.