"It's all about community."
My friend Terri came to visit me in Denver in what feels like many many years ago now. (We're so old you know.)
As we tootled around Denver and the Front Range area, somehow we got stuck on this phrase "It's all about community."
I honestly don't remember why this came about, but like I said, it has stuck with me.
And it's so stinkin' true!
As many of you know, we moved in September to Sun Prairie, Wisconsin, just outside of Madison to help our friends, Dave and Becky Tilma, with the church they were in the process of launching. After a few months of settling in, it was decided that Erik would take over "community" at Ezra, while Dave headed up the one-on-one discipleship component. (This is of course among the dozens of other things they divvy up as the only full time staff. :) )
This suits Erik--and his wife (me :) )--well, as our experience in ministry has caused us to become firm believers in the importance of some type of small group--life group, growth group, cell group. Call 'em what you want, but the key idea is this: It's all about community. (Of course, it's also "all about" Jesus, getting in the Word, serving etc, but community's right up them in importance.)
So in February, Growth Groups were launched. I've been leading a women's group with eight attending, including myself. And may I just say, it has been a BLAST! Because ....
It's all about community.
Some comments from the ladies throughout these 10 weeks so far:
At the start of week 2: "I loved knowing people at church on Sunday! I could say hi to, like, 6 ladies I usually would have walked right past!"
"I wish this Growth Group could go on forever!"
"Yeah--her husband's going to help us fix our car this weekend. I love knowing people at church!"
"I love coming each week--even though we're all different ages and stages, I've learned so much from these ladies!"
"Can we do another women's Growth Group?"
"Can we do a women's retreat? I think that'd be a blast, now that I know people."
"I've never thought about these topics before ... and I love discussing the book with my new friends!"
"Can we have a reunion?!"
I could go on and on and on ... but let's suffice it to say .... :)
It's all about community.
We can read the Word, pray to our Lord, even show up weekly on a Sunday morning and sip coffee and eat donuts together. But if we're not investing in someone else's life, and allowing someone else to invest in ours, and taking off our masks and getting real with each other, we're seriously missing out.
So, if your church offers some sort of small group experience and you've been too scared, or too busy, or too whatever to try one out--DO IT NOW.
Because ..... Say it with me ....
It's all about community!!!