Stacey: “I had been part of the Crossroads Florence community for several years before my family moved to Lexington. We started attending just before the merge with Crossroads in Cincinnati, and after attending a newcomer meeting, I decided to find a women’s Bible study that met at night when I was able to go. I went without knowing a single person there and met Tammy.”
Tammy: “I had been part of Crossroads Lexington for years before the merger happened. When the change was announced, I chose to hang around and trust the church leadership. A lot of the people I knew left the church as things started changing and some stopped attending anywhere. I’m not sure what would’ve happened if I had left too. Stacey really seemed to be placed by God to help me with sticking it out because I really knew her and her heart and felt comforted by her familiarity with Crossroads.”
Over time both of us hopped around into different women’s groups with a variety of people. After one of our groups we started serving – Stacey in the office and Tammy in Kids’ Club – so we would be together throughout the week even outside of our group. We really were just the kind of women who signed up and showed up for everything, so over time we got to know one another really well. We found out our birthdays were the same day, we both loved scrapbooking, and we had similar personalities. We decided to go to Woman Camp together and shared a tent with a woman we didn’t know. We had helped Lynn Buckles and Rachel Curvin start another women’s group, so we were trained and mentored by him in a way that gave us confidence to take our next step. At camp we talked about starting and leading a group of our own and our tentmate was the first person we invited to join us.
Over the past few years we’ve done all kinds of studies from Beth Moore to the Crossroads Weekend Follow Up and really got to know one another on another level when we decided to have everyone in the group write their own stories and share them. We’ve also gotten to go back to Woman Camp as a group.
Over the past year or two, both of us and other women in our group have lost parents or close family members. It has been pretty amazing to see the ladies in our group all come together on their own to care for one another. No one has to ask, it just gets done. From delivering meals to attending services or going in together to provide something that shows our support, this group recognizes any need and shows up to meet it. It feels like our group has grown more spiritually and gotten closer through that than anything else.
On top of the significant amount of death our group has experienced, Covid really made us work for community. At the beginning of the pandemic we were meeting in parking lots spaced out. We drew secret sister names to surprise one another with porch drops, took part in birthday parades, and we kept up a group text and occasional Zoom calls just to check in. We really wanted to keep up the connection and it worked! Now women in our group are starting to discover their shared interests and going hiking on their own during the weekend or going out to dinner together on the fly. One woman who was invited by her neighbor has stayed in the group after her neighbor moved on to something else and the women in our group are serving in a variety of areas on their own. We used to feel like we had to plan everything and start everything, but it’s starting to flourish way past us. That has been part of the growth for the two of us who can be a little OCD at times – we used to feel like we had to do it all, but giving things away is helping someone else to grow in the gifts God has placed in them. We want to continue that culture and continue helping the women in our group take their own next steps to grow closer to God and deeper in community. -Tammy W. and Stacey B.