Posted by: powellsinsantacruz | August 19, 2012


We started a Homegroup in our house a few months ago. A Homegroup is a small group made up of people from the Church who meet together during the week. The aim is to share life together, to form a community that worships God together and grows both in size as new people join, and in relationship with God.

This is the third Homegroup in our Church. When we first moved here we went to one of the others and loved it. With the arrival of more children it has been harder to get to the other Homegroups- they are in the other side of the city. We have really missed being part of a Homegroup and have been looking forward to forming a new one in our part of the city.

Some of our friends expressed wonder and amazement (well that’s what it sounded like to me) at how we were able to run a Homegroup with our young family so I thought I would share with you a few Powell secrets.

We plan the Homegroup a month in advance. This way any emergencies or unexpected happenings do not affect our organisation. Then on the night our routine is more or less this (times are accurate to within the nearest two minutes).

  • 5:42 Tea time- a healthy family friendly meal. Every member of the family happily eats a nutritious and appropriate sized portion. Nobody cries at all.
  • 5:57 Clear up and wash up- This is where our oldest two take their share in the chores and tidy up, wash up and put away all dirty plates etc. During this time Caleb will have some educational input from Roz or myself.
  • 6:08 Caleb’s bath- In peace and tranquility Roz or I will get the little man nice and clean. At the same time Chloe and Evie will read by themselves and spend some time reflecting on their respective days.
  • 6:13 Evie’s bath- This is now done with less supervision as Evie is progressing into cleaning herself effectively and would never dream of drinking the bathwater. Or throwing it all round the bathroom.
  • 6:25 Roz feeds Caleb and he goes to bed
  • 6:27 At the same time I get Evie ready for bed. At the same time Chloe tidies up all the toys and books in the lounge and her bedroom without being asked or needing one of us to do it again afterwards.
  • 6:40 Both babies asleep. Chloe has her shower, cleans teeth and gets ready for bed.
  • 6:56 We read the Bible with Chloe, pray together and she goes to sleep in a matter of minutes. She does not get up repeatedly to go to the toilet, ask for water, see what we are doing or use any of those other usual procrastinating tactics beloved by children.

This then gives us about 1/2 an hour before people arrive for Homegroup and we have time to lay out a red carpet from our gate to front door, hang a rather lovely light display to set the mood and bake a cake for everyone to enjoy.

Oh alright. None of the above is true. What usually happens is that when the first people arrive for Homegroup all the children are still awake, the house is a tip, the table is covered in dirty plates and several people are crying. Often Roz and I.

What we also find is that every time Homegroup night comes there are usually several very good reasons why we should cancel it. These often include tiredness, illness, lack of any food to share, general grumpiness, tiredness, lack of ability to speak Spanish that night, and did I mention tiredness? What is interesting is that this was also the pattern we noticed when we led a Homegroup in the UK- every time Homegroup night came around there were 101 good reasons why we couldn’t have Homegroup. And none of them at that time involved children.

So in reality Homegroup is messy. But then it should be, shouldn’t it? If one of our major aims is to share life together, then Homegroup should reflect life. It shouldn’t be a false bubble where we try and pretend, rather a time when we involve other people, our brothers and sisters in our lives and, as a community, bring our lives to God.

We are at the beginning of that- getting to know each other, starting to share and worship together and hopefully to grow together in our love for God and people.



  1. I’m crying too! (and laughing!) Love you all so much, Mum

  2. Thanks so much, Powellets, for this honest insight into your lives.Blessings. Love you all to bits!

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