Solano Community Church is emphasizing home groups this month. As we grow in numbers, home groups become more and more important to discipleship. We’ve never wanted to be that church where people merely “attend” on Sunday but see little impact on the rest of their lives.
Sunday worship and weekly home group are meant to reinforce each other. On Sunday, we worship and pray together with people we really know (because of home group) and, via the sermon, we begin a conversation about an important biblical topic. During the week, that conversation progresses as we meet to encourage each other to apply the scriptures in our daily lives.
That’s the vision. Sometimes, however, the complexities of home group relationships can get in the way of accomplishing it. Our experiences, families, cultures, giftings, life-stages and many other factors influence how we view community. And these views don’t always mesh with the others in our group.
The result is that healthy community always ends up being a bit of a balancing act, an assemblage of dynamic tensions that never fossilize into a rigid lattice of predictable, wooden relationships.
So, what makes for a successful home group? Perhaps one of the first steps to healthy community is to recognize the simple reality that communities are always in flux. As a home group, you’ll never get to a place where the relationships have become so settled that they no longer require thought and intentionality.
Fluctuation is normal. Adjustment is normal. Tensions are normal. Sometimes community will be harder, sometimes less so. But we don’t even get to determine the timing of those shifts in most cases!
We shouldn’t fear, however. The New Testament is saturated with talk of community and relationships precisely because healthy community does require constant vigilance. We’re not the first ones to have experienced this dynamic.
In fact, it’s through the dynamism of community that God accomplishes much of his most important work in us. After years of witnessing him do it, I’ve resolved to make peace with the idea that tensions, competing forces and flux will always be present.
And, instead of seeking the most expedient resolution, I’m learning to ask God to show me what he’s accomplishing through them. Will you join me? And together we’ll see the vision for community come to fruition.
In the next post, we’ll look at the specific forces we balance in home group…