How Can Our Church Become Closer Relationally?
Becoming close relationally in an organic church is necessary and should be normal but it should not be orchestrated. We need relationships that are nurtured so how can this be
Many people think that in order to grow more intimate with each other they need to expose more of themselves or ask probing questions about the struggles of life. This is not wrong but when it is asked as an assignment, it feels more like a formula and un-natural. Many may rebuff because they view it as artificial. In the past, I've tried this approach. of asking probing questions. What I met was people actually sharing less because they 'felt' forced or manipulated into sharing things they didn't want to share. So, what is the answer to help an organic church grow closer together?
What I've learned is the best way to grow more intimate in an organic church or any setting is to be on mission together. It may sound counter intuitive, but I have found it to be absolutely true. God has placed in each of us an organic bent towards mission and adventure. While on a mission together you will see each other mess up, get angry, do something heroic, be lazy, see leadership arise or whatever. It is at those moments that hearts begin to be sown together...naturally. As we work together on a task, we will reach out to help or comment on something done well or ask someone about a bonehead move they made during the adventure together. We often grow the fastest when we are focused on others in stead of ourselves (individually or corporately). So maybe, just maybe all churches needs focus outward in order to grow inward!
Think about the deep friendships that are forged out of being on a sports team (missional) or working on a project at your job (missional) or with soldiers fighting a battle on the front lines (missional) . These 'liminal' experiences often forge things deep in our souls that can't be done sitting around a living room in conversation. I hope I never lose the desire for adventure with people because that is how friendships are best forged.
What are some missional things that your church as done or are planning on doing?
If you have any questions, comments or stories about this tip, please send them to me!