I think the Lord is showing me something I have seen over and over, but missed for the last decade. We are all in a group, but are we intentionally present? Do we even realize we are in a group? Do we understand our potential impact in the lives of those within the group? How could we make an impact in the lives of those we do life with?
Here is what made me go over the edge and begin really pondering this thought path. I was sitting in the Bonney Lake Library with one other dad, 21 moms and grandmothers with 25 toddlers/babies and one amazing toddler group leader. By all means and purposes this is a group that I am a part of. I can make relationships in this room, discover needs in community here, and make a positive impact in the community through this circle of people. But is this in my thought pattern and do I take the opportunities presented to see my presence as mission?
Somehow, as a pastor at a church, when it comes time to promote and launch into a group season my mind becomes blind to all the groups people are already involved in and we push forward towards our own groups as if they are the only ones that are happening in the lives of our people. Reality is…there are many groups…but are we present and engaging the potential relational impact of these groups as if they are our groups?
- Sports teams are groups
- soccer team parents are groups
- in our neighborhood the school bus stop is a group
- the toddler learn and play at the library is a group
- the swim class is a group
- the commuter train is a group (same people every day)
- What about your running group, crossfit, gym class
Maybe instead of asking how many groups our churches can produce we need to empower our people (eph. 4) to make an impact in the groups they already belong to. How can we begin to track this and find out our true impact potential? Just maybe we are getting in the way by trying to manufacture groups when we should be preparing people to open their eyes and make a missional impact where they are already planted! #tc