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Advice for Finding Community as a Young Adult

I had a job, even had fun hobbies and a great group of good friends that I got to see on a fairly regular basis.

But where was my community?

At the beginning of last year, I was at a place in my life where I wasn’t exactly certain about what I was doing. Or really even sure about who my people were. Hello, young adulthood, am I right?

I wasn’t certain I knew where I was going, who I was or what I wanted. Granted, I still have like 75% more of all that to figure out, but let’s just say I was in a much different place than I am now.

It was in January that I decided that I would start going back to church regularly  and that I was going to go out there and meet new people.

And well, it didn’t exactly pan out the way I’d hoped.

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I was determined to try new things and put myself in new situations and experiences. For example, yoga became a tri-weekly endeavor, basically taking over my free time and social calendar. So much so, that I would skip church to make sure I got a good spot for me and my mat at a 10am class. MeetUps were my new social ground. I wanted to try everything from weekly hiking groups to improv acting classes. And I did these some of those things for a while but ultimately, I still didn’t feel like any of these places were where I needed to be.

In truth, there was no community to be found among any of those things.

“What I realize now that I didn’t know then was that, it’s hard to find what you don’t know you’re looking for.”'s hard to find what you don't know you're looking for. Click To Tweet

And I truly didn’t know what it was that I was searching for – that is, until God showed me. At the beginning of last year, amidst the busyness, a word that continued to pop up in my everyday life was community. I didn’t know what that meant, or what it even looked like.

All I knew was that it was something that I wanted to find.

But with everything I was trying so hard to do in order to fill this mysterious, ever-present void in my life, I didn’t know where to look. By God’s grace, that answer came in the form of a…MeetUp (go figure!).

After a few weeks of trying (and failing) to feel a sense of community among the myriad of activities I was trying to incorporate into my life, I started going back to church regularly each Sunday. I made a concerted effort to wake up and just go, no matter how I was feeling or even if I had to go it alone.

Most churches insist that the best way to get plugged in is through joining a Life Group (or small group), where there would be weekly meetings and Bible studies. Only problem was, I didn’t really feel like any of the Bible studies were for me. Not to say that there was anything intrinsically wrong with them, it’s just that they didn’t feel right. So, I decided to look for a Bible study MeetUp near my job to see if there would be a way for me to go during the week.

After all, what did I have to lose?

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A few MeetUps came up through my initial search, but one in particular caught my eye. I followed the link to the group’s website and started reading their values and What We Believe statement. Unbeknownst to me, God was about to move in a way I never could have expected.

I attended the study for the first time in either late-January or early-February (about 1 year ago). I was greeted warmly and welcomed with open arms. But truthfully, I was disappointed when I didn’t have that immediate feeling of belonging and closeness that I’d hoped I would feel when I got there. And I wondered why.

Despite this confusion, I couldn’t help but think that this was where I needed to be. No matter how…out of place I felt. I asked myself, why Lord do you keep nudging me in this direction?  And why didn’t I feel that immediate sense of you are ‘meant to be’ here? Isn’t that what ‘community’ is all about?

Long story, short:

His plans are far greater than mine, and He sees the bigger picture – that’s why.

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And His answer didn’t come right away. In fact, He didn’t respond to that question at all in those first few months. But looking back, I can tell you without a doubt that He was working.

It’s been about one year since I joined the Bible study and I have never felt more at home. It took some time, as do most relationship building experiences, but through the study I have found a sort of refuge. I found a place of safety and shelter amidst life’s storms. It’s been a place where I can go to hear of God’s faithfulness in the lives of my friends. And a place where I can share my own struggles and faith victories with them. It’s a place where I can receive counsel, teaching and sound advice. It’s also been a place where God has met me personally. He tends to do that within community, I’m finding.

So, do you even really need community?

Yes. Yes, you do.

It might take a while to find it or for it to feel like home, but you will find it.

God is faithful to provide and He does so, abundantly. 

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