Today I officially joined the church I've been attending for two years. Seems more administrative than anything, but I know it has to be more than that/I need to become more involved and deliberate about my faith journey. Becoming part of a community is ... difficult for me, given my temperament, personality and feeling of impermanence.
The pastor who is my age is great, and everything else is the same as it was before the official "new member Sunday" took place. (I find it odd that you can't become a member whenever you want but have to wait for specific Sundays ... that's not the case in pretty much every other church I've attended, although this is the first one I've transferred to since Stillwater.)
I stood in line for coffee hour after church, and it was just weird. Some people my age said hello to me (and congratulations ... isn't "congratulations" a weird thing to say? I'd have expected "welcome" instead), but then they turned around and had a bland conversation without including me. Shawn said it's just New York for you, and whatever it was it didn't hurt my feelings. (Just like it hasn't hurt my feelings that I've been attending for two years and no one really knows me ... but also that's on me for not seeking out conversations and getting to know anyone else ... two-way street and all that.)
I didn't stay long, although I do intend to join the Young Adult group, and Shawn and I can do some of their activities together (an all-you-can-eat BBQ dinner sounds up our alley!), and I'd like to make the conscious decision to participate in a regular Bible study. I am doing some of that on my own (reading through the one year Bible and an Upper Room reflection calendar), but I've already got questions and had WTF? moments re-reading Abraham's story.
A super moment during the sermon/service was the line "God loves you, and there's nothing you can do about it." And then we each turned to the people around us and said that to each other. Isn't that the greatest thing? And you, reading, anonymous or family or whoever: God loves YOU and there's nothing you can do about it!