Our Senior Pastor, Jim Kennington, wrote an excellent letter to our church in the March/April Vine (church newsletter). It’s good to hear from the lead guy, and I think it will renew your enthusiasm for Christian community!
Dear Church Family,
The Christian life is a team sport. I grew up playing sports–baseball, football, and basketball primarily! Too many people I know are living like it is an individual sport. It’s not, it’s a team sport!
I want to ask you a question. Are you in a small group? God’s Word makes it clear that this is his plan for us to grow as followers. I know there are times for all of us when it won’t work to commit to be in a small group. It is fine to step out of a small group for a short season. But when this becomes the pattern rather than the exception, I believe something could be very wrong.
Proverbs 18:1 tells us, ‘Whoever isolates himself seeks his own desire; he breaks out against all sound judgment.” In other words, it is selfish and foolish to avoid living in community as a follower of Christ. Without regular connection and accountability that happens in the context of a small group we don’t grow as God plans for us to grow. God’s call is for us to be disciples, to be fully devoted followers of Christ.
A discipleship environment must include authenticity and accountability. It must also include a safe place to share struggles without rejection.
Very few Christians truly have accountability in their relationships. It takes time to build such relationships, especially ones that allow others to know us well enough to speak truth to our hearts. We all struggle at times. The devil loves to get us alone and tell us we are worse than anyone else. So, we live alone in the dark where the devil loves to play. But we all need constant support. Ecclesiastes4:10reminds us, “Woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up!” Only in relationship, only in community, can we receive the advice, counsel, admonishment and support we need to grow to maturity in Christ.
The priority of small groups in addition to the larger worship gathering is the pattern that the followers of Christ established from the very beginning. Acts2:46comments on this, “Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts.”
The Christian life is a team sport! Are you trying to play it alone? Will you prayerfully consider joining a small group or finding a spiritual mentor to help you grow in your relationship with the Lord? It is worth the effort to make sure you are really living out the Christian life that God has planned for you.
Please check out the small groups page of our church website or contact the church office.
I love you!
Not in Christian community right now? Consider getting in it at LCCC, you are welcome here! People who are in it, and leading it, you are doing a great thing and are appreciated!
Blessings on our homes,