Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Less-Than-Best Friends

Time to engage with an honest question; how many of the people in your small group do you really connect with? Be honest—you’re not best friends with all 12 members of your group.

The reality is that you probably enjoy the company of one or two couples more than you do the rest. You likely talk with one or two individuals more than you do with everyone in the group. Your interests are probably more closely aligned with a couple specific people in your group than they are aligned with everyone’s. That’s just how it is.

You’re not going to be best friends with everyone—you weren’t in elementary school and you’re not going to be as adults.

Yet God has still placed you in a small group community with these people—some who’ve become your closest friends and some who’ve not.

I discussed this issue with a small group leader yesterday. He told me that the couple he and his wife were closest with in his small group had left the group (on good terms) within the last few months. They had to wrestle with disappointment, disillusionment, and the honest question of whether or not they wanted to continue.

They pressed on. They fought for a community that was centered on the person and work of Jesus Christ and not mere likes and dislikes. They sought authentic Biblical community. And their group has bonded in a way they could not have imagined! It doesn’t take away the sting of missing their closest friends. But their group has grown into a level of authenticity before God and before each other that is far richer than a simple friendship.

Christ-centered community is about more than friendships with people we like. It’s deeper than that. It’s about journeying through both the fun and the not-so-fun with people who are less-than-best friends. It’s about doing life together with our brothers and sisters in faith.

1 comment:

Michael C. Mack said...

Excellent post! I've never thought of this before, but there IS surrender involved in authentic community. Surrender of what we want for what God wants to accomplish. When God moves me out of my comfort zone is when he does his best work -- in and through me.