Fulfilling the purpose of your life requires community. Don’t take my word for it. Listen to what God himself says in 1 Peter 2:9. “You are…a people for his own possession that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.”
The Lord says something critically important here. He reminds us of our identity. We are not individual Christians enjoying a personally customized relationship with God thanks to our local barista, Jesus. We are a people. More specifically, we’re his people. That means our felt need for relationship with other Christians should never be the driving reason we pursue community. We should pursue community because God created and saved us for community.
We naturally think of community as a gear we can deploy whenever we feel the need, whenever we’re in crisis, or need a spiritual pick-me-up, or want a sense of belonging. It’s nice to know people are there for you when we need them. That kind of “community” on demand may feel good to us, but it doesn’t please God at all because it’s not God-centered. It’s self-centered. God wants us to pursue community not simply because we feel the need, but rather because we humbly recognize it’s our God-given identity in Christ and delight to please him by living out our identity in Christ.
That’s why we are working hard to expand the number of Community Groups in our church. A Community Group is a small group of (ideally) 8-10 adults who are on a mission to help one another follow Jesus in every area of life. They also require good leadership. I’m not talking about spiritual superheroes. I’m talking about men and women who love Jesus and are willing to engage, love, and connect people, mobilizing them to help each other follow Jesus.
We presently need 3 or 4 new Community Group leaders. It’s a good problem to have! The Lord has continued to add members to our body, even in the midst of a pandemic. If you’re interested in serving or someone has encouraged you to step into the role, our next training cohort begins in February. Participants commit to attending at least 5 of the 6 training sessions, plus doing 60-90 minutes of homework beforehand. All sessions will be held in person on the following Sundays from 12:00-1:30pm in the Seminar Room.
Feb 21, Mar 21, Apr 18, May 16, June 6, July 11
Please contact Matthew by January 24 if you have questions or are interested in joining this training. Space is limited due to the class’s interactive nature. Both married and single adult church members are welcome. Participation in the class doesn’t require a commitment on your part to lead a Community Group this year or guarantee an invitation to do so. Our goal is simply to equip potential leaders to mobilize their Community Group through the way they engage, love, and connect the people in their group.
Don’t let feeling unqualified stop you from participating. One of the side benefits of group leader training is demystifying what it actually takes to be an effective group leader. While it’s a significant investment of time, it’s also an incredible privilege to support your spiritual brothers and sisters in living out our corporate identity in Christ. We anticipate running this training every other year, so consider taking it now even if you are reluctant to lead a group until COVID concerns dissipate.