We had a great second meeting and welcomed more new friends into the group!
Pat started us out with a Mentor Mom minute. She had some great suggestions: 1) The website crosscards.com for sending email cards, 2) Using a shadow box to display baby shoes in to show off those tiny first few shoes, 3) Placing a onesie or baby shoes in a Christmas ornament that opens (from Michaels or similar craft store) for a keepsake or gift.
Pastor Abel was with us and led a focused discussion of Isaiah 55, from which our MOPs theme verse for the year is taken (verse 12): “For you shall go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and the hills before you shall break forth into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.” He guided a heartfelt discussion on how this chapter in Isaiah relates to our Fierce Flourishing theme of the year – how flourishing means to live our lives to the fullest as God made us and allowing God to work through us. We discussed things that prevent us from being fierce or flourishing, primarily our various fears. He grouped these into fears of identity (criticism, judgement, conflict) and fears of security (making mistakes, bad things that could happen in the future, failure). Several passages in Isaiah relate to these fears and how we can find peace in the grace of God, including verse 3: “Incline your ear, and come to me; hear, that your soul may live; and I will make with you an everlasting covenant, my steadfast, sure love for David.” Pastor Abel pointed out how God not just loves and cherishes us, but likes us too. He wants us to let go of our fears and worries so we can live joyfully, with the knowledge that our future is absolutely guaranteed. He pointed out that our identity is secure in God, our past is redeemed in God, and our future is secure in God. Let us go out and flourish!!
Linda led an extended devotional on our Fierce Flourishing topic. We had discussion time at our tables on the breakdown of the theme into different parts: 1) Celebrating Lavishly (we remembered and shared a time of celebration), 2) Embracing Rest (what we do to find rest and how do we like to play), 3) Noticing Goodness (we discussed where we need hope in our lives), and 4) Flourishing (what do we need: more margin in our lives, getting unstuck letting go of urgent demands, or other challenges. We wrote this down on a note and put it in an envelope. The mentor moms will return these to us in January to see how we’re doing!). It was a really meaningful time of discussion at the tables. Linda also shared a passage from Saint Teresa that has helped her through many times of worry:
From Saint Teresa
Let nothing disturb you,
nothing cause you fear;
All things pass
God is unchanging.
Patience obtains all:
Whoever has God
Needs nothing else,
God alone suffices.
(Saints for All Seasons, p. 128)
Please remember the MOPs family picnic coming up next Saturday, September 26 at 5:30 at Our Father Lutheran Church. BBQ will be provided, everyone can just bring a side dish and get ready for some fun!
We look forward to seeing you at our next meeting October 2!
We had a great first meeting of the MOPS year, and were thrilled to see several new faces! After enjoying a big breakfast spread provided by our steering team, we did introductions and met everyone at our tables. Jeri, one of our wonderful Co-Coordinators, introduced us to the Fierce Flourishing theme for this year and how it will manifest in our meetings. Each month we will have a speaker or craft/activity based on that month’s topic. For September it will be A Fierce Flourishing, In October we will Celebrate Lavishly, November will be Noticing Goodness, and December we will be Embracing Rest. Jeri also made a very helpful OFLC MOPS handbook, so if you missed the first meeting be sure to pick up one of those and our meeting dates magnet.
We also met our Mentor Moms and learned they will be doing Mentor Mom Minutes at some of our upcoming meetings. We’re so blessed to have the wisdom and love these women offer.
Our getting to know you game was great! We made a big circle, and Sarah (Creative Activities coordinator) read questions that had us all move in or out of the circle if we matched. It was surprising how many women have visited several continents and how many speak a foreign language. It was no surprise that so many of us like chocolate. Great way to learn about each other.
Our final activity was making our nametags for the year (see below). Beautiful! We have some extras so if you missed the meeting today you can add your name to one of those.
The children had a fantastic first day at MOPPETS too. In case you’re new to MOPPETS, our children meet in the nursery upstairs during our 2 hour meeting. We’re fortunate to have such loving, kind leaders who use a Christian curriculum to keep the youngsters engaged and active. They sing songs, play games, listen to Bible stories and make crafts. If you have an infant and would prefer they stay with you, that’s fine too.
Here’s how our meetings generally run for those new to the group:
9:15am MOPPETS drop-off begins
9:30am Breakfast/Opening Prayer/Announcements
9:45am Devotional, typically led by a member of our Steering Team or a Mentor Mom
10:00am Icebreaker or game
10:15am Video/Speaker OR Creative Activity & Discussion
11:25am Closing Blessing
11:30am MOPPETS pick-up
We hope to see you at our next meeting on September 18th!!