So there's that saying about how it takes a village to raise your kids. Some people will quip, "I've seen the village and I don't want them raising my kids."
I am fortunate to have an awesome village. It isn't geographic though my neighbors are nice. My village is my MOPS ladies (Yes! Those women again!) and our church family. We moved here four years ago and so we haven't had a ton of time to build relationships, but the blessing of MOPS and an amazing congregation have given us a place to belong, feel welcome and call home.
That doesn't mean it's all smooth sailing. It doesn't mean it's all sugary sweet, because people are human and we have different opinions and the stuff of life goes on and on. If it was sugary sweet, it wouldn't be real or if it was "real" how healthy could it be? Just think of all the cavities!
I am thankful for my village of people who care enough to celebrate in the good times, but not to turn away or judge in the less than perfect times. It is in the bad times, when they can stand beside you and give you a hug and offer a shoulder or a tissue that I know how awesome my village is. I love the times of laughter and of joyful celebration, don't get me wrong. It's just good to know that your village isn't full of fair weather friends who only want to hear the answer, "Good." when they ask, "How are you?" (I'm not advocating spewing all your stuff as you say a passing, "Hey!" at VBS drop off, don't get me wrong. There's a time and a place, but if you need a shoulder, it's okay to ask then, too.)
I'm reminded of the theme song from the sitcom "Cheers":
Making your way in the world today takes everything you've got.
Taking a break from all your worries, sure would help a lot.
Wouldn't you like to get away?
Sometimes you want to go
Where everybody knows your name,
and they're always glad you came.
You wanna be where you can see,
our troubles are all the same
You wanna be where everybody knows your name.
It's not so much about escape, as about community. People that understand that everybody has worries and "stuff". My village gives me a break from my worries because I can see that I am not alone, that I have people to shoulder them with me, to listen and to pray.
I pray that you have a village of people to love and support you, in the great times and the not-so-great times. We were created to live in community and I pray that you have a community, a village, that blesses you with love and joy and shoulders, that you and your village can be His hands and feet to one another.