Do groups really matter?

As a pastor in the Groups Ministry, my job often involves convincing people that groups are essential.  And convincing leaders that groups are worth giving their lives for, while waiting for Christ’s return.

But.  Do I believe groups matter?

As a closet-introvert, I prefer solace.  Selfishly, I would never choose to be in a group of people and freely give of myself.  This is obviously not a healthy perspective, but honesty is seldom a healthy dose of reality.  However, my group seems to want to know who I really am and be known in return.

For that, I am grateful.

Without them, an xBox, golf clubs, and a MacBook would be my platonic friends.  An xBox cannot challenge me to become a better husband (a better Jedi perhaps).  Golf clubs do not answer my phone call at 11pm when I must push a car onto a trailer (in the middle of no where).  And a MacBook never needs my encouragement during a difficult time.

Without a group, I could continue practicing my selfish ways uninhibited.  I could shield this practice with smoke screens like, “I’m too busy” or  “I had a bad experience” or “I can study the bible on my own.”  All of which are true for me.

I missed group last night because I was working late.  To my surprise, when I finally did arrive home (~10pm) cars littered my driveway and cul de sac.  My group was still at my house.  Waiting on me.  You know what?  After 3 years together, I would have done the same thing.

What’s happening to me?

Group, community, sharing life, or whatever you want to call it, has changed me.  Without my knowledge and without my permission, others’ needs have become more important than my own.  Their pain, is now my pain. And their victories are mine to celebrate.  And I would wager (were wagering allowed within the unspoken, yet well-codified rules of things pastors are not supposed to do) that I am not the only one.

Have groups (small, cell, life, interest, or on-line) actually made a difference in your life?  Are groups worth the trouble? time? transparency?

If no, why not?  If so, why?  One random commenter will receive a $10 gift card of their choice.

6 billion people.  6 billion stories.  This is just one of those stories.  People.  Life is better together.

Inclement Weather & Weekend Worship

Dear Faith Promise Family,

In view of the predicted ice and snow storm for Friday and Saturday of this week, I wanted to let everyone know of some ways to stay informed regarding any changes or cancellations to our weekend worship schedule:

  • The home page of our church website, faithpromise.org.
  • WBIR & WATE post church cancellations and delays. Our information will be sent to them as well.

I would also like to remind you that even if our services are canceled, you may still connect via our Internet Campus, and you can always contribute online. Our online giving continues to increase, and we appreciate your faithfulness in furthering God’s Kingdom through Faith Promise Church as you give.

I am praying for a great weekend as we conclude our series, What’s In Your Closet? You won’t want to miss it as we look into God’s Word and learn how to “put on our dancing clothes.”

Love,

Pastor Chris

P.S. Our Internet Campus will be up and running regardless of the weather. Check it out at 10:00 or 11:45 am, or 9:00 pm.

2009 Review

Take a look at some highlights of what God did at Faith Promise in 2009:

[vimeo]http://vimeo.com/8788345[/vimeo]

Christmas Classics

Christmas Classics

Beginning this weekend, we’re getting into the Christmas spirit as we launch our new sermon series, Christmas Classics. If you’re looking for a church in the Knoxville area, we’d love to have you as our guest as we look at some familiar films and talk about the true message of Christmas.