We are scheduled to start at 7, and at 7:45, we had only 3 guests. Two of them were women who are already involved in the Comunidad Cristiana. The other was a girl whose family is involved but who doesn't attend meetings because of a conflict with someone else. I have been wanting to connect with her more. At that point in the night, I resigned myself to the idea that maybe God's work for me with Alpha was just to reach out to this girl.
You know how Jesus always managed to make the food multiply to fit the people? Well last night He did the opposite. As I started serving the food for the three of us (Tim, Sierra, me) and our three guests, the people multiplied to fit the food. By the time I was done serving food, we had 10 guests total. Another (my druggie neighbor) snuck in later just as the video was starting. What mattered to me most was the numbers but the people themselves. We had a great variety in terms of gender, age, personality and devotion to God. The people who came were people I care about, I enjoy being with, and I think could find benefit in the course.
The video was, in my opinion at least, a powerful and intruiguing presentation of our problem as people separated from God and the remarkable offer of God to draw us near again. In the conversation time afterward, there was a comfortable exchange of ideas and opinions. People were willing to disagree with one another, and at the same time, there was an air of mutual respect. We heard a lot of good questions (and ones we don't necessarily know the answers to) like "How do I know if God has forgiven me?" "What is true repentence?" and "How many times will God forgive me for the same thing?"
I for one had a good time. I think others did too and that next week we'll have most of them back to hear the "How can I be sure of my faith?" talk and share their ideas.
PS I botched the food badly and watched the joking about it put everyone (and especially me) at ease during the sometimes awkward beginning time. God's ways always surprise me.