Small Group Girls

So over the last several years, one of the highlights of my week was my Sunday evenings.  They were spent with a group of amazing young ladies, who were in high school and came together for a time of fellowship and bible study every week.  I may have been considered the leader and teacher, but these girls taught me more than they can even know.  I was blessed by these ladies and now that I live several hours away it is the one part of my week that I miss the most!!  So this is a post for them.

My connection with these girls(most of them anyway) started two summers ago at camp.  I went as there chaperone and was in a room with several of them.  I was convinced they hated me because I had to discipline them and such.  At this point, I never thought that I would end up making some great friends with these then eighth grade girls.

A few weeks later the semester started and I was the youth intern at the church.  I also signed up to be a small group leader.  I figured I would take a group of juniors or seniors in high school and that way when I graduated they would be moving on to college and I wouldn’t have to leave the group, plus at this time I still thought that the incoming freshman girls didn’t like me.  So what did I do when my boss asked me if I would lead the freshman girls bible study?  I said of course!  Ultimately I knew that the Lord had a plan and I knew that I loved students, age didn’t really matter.

So we start this bible study and I have an amazing group of girls, Savannah, Taylor, Lauren, Hannah Ruth, Kayla, Sarah, Mallory, and Madeline.  It was a rough beginning for me trying to figure out how to connect with them, but before long, we hit it off.  These girls became a HUGE part of my life.  They let me in, let me pour wisdom into their lives and they open my eyes to some things that I didn’t know about myself.

The year went on and our group grew together every week.  There were some bumps in the road as anyone can expect, but we made it through.  We gathered at the Snyder home every week and had snacks, talked, hung out, and studied God’s Word together.  It was sweet sweet time in my eyes.  Christmas came and we had a fun party, then we had a break for a few weeks before starting back up where we left off in the Spring.

The Spring semester flew by and before we knew it summer had arrived and I was off to serve on a missions team for the summer.  We had an amazing dinner and celebration to end our fantastic year.  Leaving these ladies for the summer was one of the hardest things I had done at that point, but I knew in just a couple months I would be back to them and we would pick up where we had left off.

Summer came and went and when I moved back to BG I was so excited about reconnecting with my girls who were now Sophomores in high school.  This year we added a few new faces to our group, Alex, Sarah, Beth, and Morgan.  We also added in a new leader, Mylinda. Each of these new ladies touched my heart like all the others and adding Mylinda in was a huge relief to me.  I knew that I was graduating and possibly moving at Christmas and with her helping me I knew that they would be in good hands when I left.  Not that that has made the transition away any easier.

The semester was great and connections really seemed to be made with some of the ladies, especially in the end. Unfortunately the fall ended before I was ready for it to.  The last official night I had with these ladies we did a time of sharing our stories and our struggles.  It was a blessed night for me.  I was able to see even more what these ladies struggled with and the impact that the Lord had made on them through our small group.  It was AMAZING!  I thought I was going to see them all the next week for our Christmas party, but the weather made this impossible.

I have yet to say an official goodbye to these 12 wonderful girls and I miss them dearly.  I think about them often and lift them up in prayer.  I could write for days about their impact on me and my life, but I am going to wrap up here.

Hannah Ruth, Kayla,  Savannah, Taylor, Lauren, Sarah, Sarah, Morgan, Beth, Alex, Mallory, & Madeline – I love you, miss you, am praying for you, and am always going to be there for you (even from hundreds of miles away)!  Thank you for the HUGE impact you have had on my life!