Thursday, October 10, 2013

Opening Up Our Lives Through Community Groups

by Robin Bolash

I love leading and being a part of a community group– studying scripture with other people and walking through life’s up and downs with a group of friends.

Our group has been meeting together for years now – and we enjoy the fruits of all that time together – we laugh a lot, we speak freely, and we share each other’s burdens.

Recently we have had a number of new folks join our group, and at the same time we have had a family in our group in crisis. I thought the combination of those two dynamics would be awkward for either the new folks or regular members of our group. As the leader I wondered, “How can we have new people join a long established group and maintain the level of intimacy, connection, and ease of communication that we enjoy?”

However, with this family in crisis, it was clear that we needed to we needed to pray –so we did. We spent an entire meeting in prayer for this family, walking through scriptures we had studied over the past few years as a springboard for intercession on their behalf. What was amazing and encouraging was that the five new folks that joined us for the first time that night just dove right in. Even though it was their first meeting, they joined us right where we were as a community and came alongside this family with us to care for and pray for them in a time of great need.

I loved experiencing that and found it deeply encouraging. I am so thankful that these newcomers were willing to join us in what we needed to do as a community group, and thankful our established group did not hesitate to welcome these newcomers. Mostly I am thankful that week after week I get to be a part of a community group so committed to one another and to the word of God. 

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