Thursday, November 06, 2008

small-group-ism

A while back, I mentioned the small group my wife and I are a part of. How I'm thankful for what it has been, and what if offers to continue to be. But I've realized recently that when I say the word "small group", you may have a view defined by your experience of what one is. So let me break it down a bit more, because I think it has much to offer.

It's not a Tuesday night Sunday School class. It's not an extension of youth group for a group of 8-10 people. I wouldn't even say it's a "bible study" group really. Have there been times where we study/read the bible together? Yup. Have there been times where we do a lesson, and discuss it together, and pray at the end? Sure. Have there even been cheesy times where we've sung around a campfire (even while getting kicked out of the area by college girls who had "reservations" or whatever)? Uh-huh. :)

But I would confess that the few hours we spend together each week, is not why I love this group. Each week, and even months, or seasons, our Tuesday nights take different forms, based on who's leading that week. Also based on what is happening in the collective humanity of the group. Sure, it's a good time, and usually we snack a bit too. But something larger happens...

You see, our group has become a safe place for broken people to share their brokenness, and point at where the world around us is broken as well. I think, especially in these days, we all need a place like this. When we leave group together, back into our worlds, we go as people set free to heal and be healed, or even learn to live with some of the brokenness. We haven't had a counseling/therapy session. We haven't spent time in heated confession before God. We have simply shared our brokenness, and pray (usually), which allows us to move beyond that a bit in our lives.

So how did we go about beginning a group like this? We didn't on purpose really. I think in the beginning, we may have even had the starry-eyed Tuesday night Sunday school in mind (at least I think I did - still do sometimes). But our few hours a week together bled into a life of community throughout the week, and presto - here we are.

So yeah...to those still searching for a community like this...keep purposefully trying. It may happen where you least expect it.

3 comments:

ngerman said...

Have you heard the Caedmon's (Andy Osenga) song Hold the Light? He wrote it about his small group. It reminds me a lot of what you just wrote. There is a line in the song that says "Every Wednesday for two years we've met, I've shown you all my anger, doubts, and bitterness." I agree with Andy and I agree with you. We need people who we trust and who won't judge us so that we CAN share those angry/negative feelings that we feel we can't let out anywhere else.

Bethany said...

I miss babysitting!!!! (in general!!!)

Ashley said...

I couldn't agree more