Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Putting Things Together

The part of the elephant we are eating this summer is to "pull different discipleship activities into one unified process for spiritual growth." Churches often do many activities that have a goal of helping people grow spiritually. These activities include: Worship, Preaching, Bible Classes, Small Groups, Ladies Classes, Retreats, Seminars, Book Clubs, Daily Devotionals, etc., just to name a few. In any given week the number of different messages these activities can generate is overwhelming. We might get one message in our Bible study, another message in the sermon, another during a Lord's Supper devotional and another during our small group. This makes all of them difficult to remember and even more difficult to apply. As one writer noted, they become a bed of nails. Lie down on a thousand nails and they won't penetrate the skin. Why? The pressure of each point is diffused by all the others around it. Too many different messages often won't penetrate our hearts and bring real change.

Therefore, our goal (with the "Fully Alive" series beginning July 27th) is to identify one “Big Idea” each week that is important to the spiritual growth of attendees and members, then use a number of weekly activities to reinforce that one message.

Toward this end we have several teams that are working hard to bring this process together. If you have a specific interest in one of these teams, please contact the team leader.

Preaching Team.
Each week’s work begins with the Preaching Team and flows to other work groups from there. This team meets weekly to plan, brainstorm and formulate the big ideas, texts, and outlines for Sunday messages and define desired outcomes in the hearts and lives of the listeners. This team meets every Thursday from 3:00-5:00 PM. During each meeting the team discusses a message that will be preached two months in the future. Members of this team include: Brent Brady (lead), Sean McCarthy, Jim Waldo and Jay Sessoms (apprentice). When this group's work is completed it is given to the Discipleship Team, Worship Team and Resource Team so they can complete their piece of the process.

Discipleship Team. This team is responsible for creating five daily devotionals and one small group study each week which accent the "Big Idea." Each daily devotional consists of a Bible reading and 4-6 questions that encourage personal study and life application. The small group experience will allow further discussion and specific application of the Sunday morning message. Team members include Sean McCarthy (lead),Steve Raley, Charlie Fooks, and Michele Keeton.

Worship Planning Team: This team provides creative content and flow which ensure that our Sunday morning worship clearly communicates and reinforces the week's "Big Idea." Team members include Juliana Smith (lead), David Smith, Brent Brady, and Sean McCarthy.

Research Team: This team provides research items (i.e., articles, illustrations, quotes, insights, etc) to the above teams which, when appropriate, will be integrated into the final work each group produces. This team works independently and does not have formal meetings. Team members include: Brent Brady (lead), Bill Hill, and Anne Bass.

We wanted you to know that many people are working behind to ensure that Community provides relevant environments where you can continue your quest to "follow Jesus so closely that your life is changing to be like His."

1 comment:

Mike Pfingst said...

This is a great tool. They do the same thing at Christ in Youth summer conferences. Everything all day long at the conference points at the same message. Even your daily personal devos. At the end of the day the message is familiar (sp.?) I also think the daily devos will be helpful. Sometimes people don't know what to study next or even what to do in their quiet time. I am excited to get started with it. Thanks