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Making Community Matter

GroupsMatter

I’m an advocate of making our big churches smaller by focusing on the circles we live in, not the rows we sit in. I also  I think it’s a great thing for my children to see me in meaningful community with others.

It’s a responsibility of mine to work hard to make this big world, as small as possible for my kids. I want them to see that I value my relationships with others, I want them to hear me on the phone with a friend, I want them to know that on Wednesday nights we leave them with a sitter because Wednesday nights is OUR night with our community group. I need them to know that I need relationships with others.

I’ll admit, this has been a struggle for us over the years. So often, community fell to the side because my job had me working 8 days a week. Our relationships would cycle up and down like the weather; a few friends here and there. Having just recently established the principle of sharing our lives with others, we’ve seen the benefit of our kids have gained.

 

They value their own group time talking with people they trust. They have a small group time at church, and now they see their parents doing much of what they are doing each week.

 

They regularly interact with adults and other families because of our relationships discovered in community. They meet new people, and expand their own relationships because of our relationships.

 

These are just a few of the ways that community in front of my kids has proven to be important in our family. Today, I’m choosing to make community matter by living community out in front of my kids.

 

Jonathan Cliff is married to his wife Starr and they together live out their days with two sons and a daughter. Jonathan serves as one of the Pastors at Grace Community Church in Clarksville, Tennessee; where he works with leaders throughout the city to help develop Christian community that leads to deep and meaningful spiritual friendships. His journey has been an adventurous one, having served in the local church for 15 years in family ministry developing leaders, building environments for kids and students to belong, and encouraging parents to take big spiritual steps with their families.