I am committed to helping people connect to God, connect to each other, and connect to our world. Right now I feel like our church needs to zero-in on connecting with each other. As I look out in our worship experiences I see so many new faces. I know many are new to our community and new to following Christ. I don't want anyone feeling like they need to make this spiritual journey alone. Our small group options are a key part of making this happen, but what about those who are just not "into" small groups. Is there a way to help people meet up outside of Sunday? In our high tech world we want real interaction. There is even a website called Meetupdedicated to helping people "Get on the internet to get off the internet."
We're going to try three ideas this summer...
1) Never Eat Alone -- In the eighties we had "Dinners for Eight" or some cheesy title like that. We still need to have some sort of connection over lunch or dessert. Everyone likes food, why not eat with someone new. We're going to try and help people take the risk of expanding their social circle at church. I like the title of the book "Never Eat Alone" I haven't read it (I don't like the premise of building your network for your own benefit) but I do like the idea of building relationships on purpose.... not to sell Amway, Tastefully Simple, Tupperware, Melaleuca (enter your favorite pyramid marketing idea here) but to invest in real relationships. We need one another as we follow Christ.
2) Name Tags -- I think people feel bad that they cannot remember people's names in church. They have seen them for six weeks in a row but they are too embarrassed to admit they forgot their name. We're going to have a monthly "Amnesty Sunday." Even if you are guilty of forgetting someone's name, you get to have a chance to learn it again.
3) Photo Directory -- This is kind of an extension to #2. I want to be praying for people in our church by name each week. When I look at the names in our online database, I don't have all the names and faces connected. I want to know who I am praying for. We have a guy in our church who is passionate about this project. It will be great to have this completed next month. I remember hearing Rick Warren say that he had 1000 names memorized in his church. There is no reason why I cannot know everyone by name until we reach 1000.
Do you want to get connected? Let me know.