Read a great article this week in .Rev Magazine by Waltz of Granger Community…He is sharp, insightful and understands people. He quoted a book by Joe Meyers The Search to Belong Rethinking Intimacy, Community and Small Groups. A great book worth the read.
He mentioned spheres of relationship and levels of relationship moving from social to intimate. I really liked what he had to say. The church in general has removed the social safe place step. In our effort to get people connected we often miss the safe social place aspect and don’t understand that people are in process, are on a journey toward relationship with God and others. We tend to move people too fast and expect people to get relationships, worship, discipleship etc. I’ve heard this statement over the years, “If people are not fully committed to our church and to discipleship and evangelism I don’t want to invest my time into their lives.” It’s the highway or the bye way thinking… Not understanding the maturity process.
Hopefully we at the Vineyard understand.
We are developing worship spaces with the goal of deepening a persons intimacy with God.
Sunday at the Vineyard we have about 25 minutes of worship, familiar, easy to sing, God focused, Holy Spirit honoring and Jesus glorifying. Words are on the screen to help people sing etc. Our worship team does a great job of not meddling with people but gently leading. This is the first worship social space.
WOW Wednesday Of Worship is the second arena we’ve developed. WOW is designed to bring people a bit deeper. 90 minutes of uninterrupted worship, readings, dance, art, video. WOW creates a space for people move deeper together. It’s a corporate time where we seek to deepen our worship together.
God Encounter is the third arena. The worship experience is deeper still. We are together, but the emphasis is on a personal encounter allowing the Holy Spirit to deepen His presence in our lives. We also offer personal prayer for people to receive ministry from our prayer team.
All spheres are important and are intentionally created to help people move from the social, to the personal. Creating safe places is the challenge, as is understanding Vineyard, Dayton people.
Also, we attempt to apply the principles in our Connection Pathway.
our Track is
A Access Point a lunch with our leaders and an overview, vision casting.
B Beginnings membership sessions with key leaders explaining who we are, where we came from, what we do, why we do what we do. Where questions can be raised and answered.
C Community Groups where people can, if they desire to join a small group, some groups are long term some are short term
D Discipleship Pathway our training, growth and development track mainly worked out on Wednesday night training, classes etc and weekend seminars.
Below is some of the .Rev article geared toward our thinking. (my paraphrase from Waltz)
‘Your Corporate Story matters… The stories of bygone days are important, they reveal our roots help us form our identity. They anchor us.(I call them mile markers.) They remind us that we are not alone. People need to know how the church started. The first building. The moves, the reason we began Main Street a couple of years ago. The history before Main Street, The LEC to our now building, to our soon to be erected new building.
It’s extremely important they understand our compelling vision they can buy into. The stories celebrate family, and a sense of identity and belonging. Belonging is partly about embracing roots, heritage and beginnings. The second aspect of Corporate Story is our future together. How they can become a part and play in the game. What’s the vision for tomorrow?.. If a compelling vision is cast, then new and old together have an opportunity to be invited to help form the future. Then the impulse to belong will be greater. People want to belong to a story that is still being written.’
The article is worth the read. should be on http://www.rev.org/magazine/ soon.