|Running frustrates me. I love running in soccer, basketball, and even baseball, but I hate running just for the fun of it. When I was in cross country, in middle school, there was a point in every race where I thought to myself, “Why am I doing this!?!” Sometimes I even wanted to quit, but I always reminded myself, “Hold on and finish.” Running was not my cup of tea, but I always enjoyed finishing.
In a word of encouragement to all our Life Group leaders and members, “Hold fast through June.” Do not let go of each other. Five months have come and gone, and now we find ourselves in June. The month of May has left many of us battered. Proms, sports, graduations, extra work hours, etc… have left all of us looking forward to a break. Keep the goals of Life groups, considering how each can stir up one another to love and to continue in good works. Do not neglect your brothers, but meet so that an encouraging word might be given to each. (Hebrews 10:24-25)
In closing let me remind you that we are not doing Life Groups just for the fun of it. God’s community is not designed to be ran individually just for fun. Wouldn’t that would be frustrating. Life Groups rather, are designed like a soccer or basketball team always dependent upon each other to win the game. Hold fast!
I don’t know where you were, but I know where I was. On June 14th, 1998, I was at my parents home when Jordan shut down the Jazz in game six. On February 3rd, 2008, I was in my friend’s living room when David Tyree, of the New York Giants, caught “The Catch” leading them to their Super Bowl win over the favored Patriots. On August 16th, 2008, I watch from my own living room Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps win his 7th, gold medal by just 1/100 of a second. On July 10th, 2011, I was in our Dallas apartment when I watched the “Comeback of the Ages” when the USA Women’s world cup team defeated Brazil.
I am sure you have similar memories, but I have to beg the question, “What made those moments happen? It wasn’t me, it wasn’t you, and it wasn’t even your friends. It was the players who choose to use their “giftedness.” As a result these men and women blessed the world with their gifts giving us some of the greatest sport moments in our history.
So what’s my point? Sure many of us don’t have the “athletic gift,” but for those who are in Christ (1 Cor. 12) we each have a “spiritual gift.” It would have been a shame if David Tyree decided moments before the game not to play. It’s actually absurd to think that way. A gift is meant to be used, and in the same way God has given us spiritual gifts, which surpasses any earthly abilities, in order that we may employ it (1 Peter 4:10). Christians who employ their gifts are the athletic department of God’s kingdom.
GET INTO THE GAME!
I saw this advertisement and thought some of you might be interested. For just $65 dollars a class session you or your child can learn the proper etiquette of eating at the table. Amazing right? This might sound crazy to you, but for some reason I still don’t know why some restaurants give you two forks. I always forget which one is for the lettuce and which one is for the main course.
Just like dinner etiquette we need to be reminded about small group etiquette. Unlike the advertisement above my sessions are free! Here are some of my Life Group etiquettes:
Be Committed – Our level of commitment to each other in some way reflects our commitment with Christ Jesus. (Gal. 6:2)
Give A Warning – If you can’t attend be considerate, let your leader know beforehand. Sometimes several people can’t come, and it might be better just to cancel the fellowship until next week.
Be On time – A group that meets together should always try to be on time so as to honor everyone’s commitment.
Know Yourself – Some of us know we are talkers, and enjoy dominating the conversations. If this you, try skipping the next question allowing someone else to respond to the question. Some of us know we are not talkers, and enjoy listening. If this is you, commit to speaking on one of the questions for the lesson.
No Gossip – If someone reveals a struggle it does not mean that everyone you know at work needs to know about it. Keep struggles confidential and encourage one another.
Silent the Phone – We all get annoyed when someone’s phone rings at the theater/class/meeting, and in the same way it is distracting when a group is in prayer and it’s interrupted by someone’s unique ring tone.