MC workshop | 3.2.19
session 2 & 3 audio
Session 2 - loving each other as a missional community (be family)
Session 3 - Loving your neighbors as a missional community (be missionaries)
LOVING EACH OTHER AS A MISSIONAL COMMUNITY
HOW DO WE GROW IN LIVING OUT OUR FAMILY IDENTITY TOGETHER?
There are many ways to live out your identity as family. Following are some ideas to get your group started:
Share your stories.
Meet each other’s needs.
Pray for each other.
Check in with members of the group who are missing.
Spend time together outside of the gathering.
Join or start DNA Groups.
how do WE WELCOME OTHERS INTO OUR FAMILY?
Though a Missional Community should desire to be a close family, the group should never fear of welcoming others into their groups.
As new people or families connect with the group, there are many ways to make sure those people or families are able to fully connect:
Assign a core family to care for them for the first few months (check in on them if they miss, get together with them for dinner, spend time fellowshipping at the Sunday gathering with them, etc.)
Ask 2-3 other families in the group to have them over for dinner sometime in the next couple months.
As they are comfortable, ask them to share their story with the entire group.
HOW DO WE RE-ENGAGE MEMBERS WHO HAVEDISCONNECTED FROM THE GROUP?
As members grow disconnected from the group, the leader should seek to reach out to learn why the members of the group have grown disconnected.
If there are other members of the group who know those people well, the leaders should utilize those people to help with reaching out.
If the leader reaches out, and the members still stay disconnected, the leader should not feel responsible for the members being disconnected. The leader is only responsible for making the opportunities available.
If the members of the group who have grown disconnected are also members of Summit Crossing, the leader should reach out the Pastor of Missional Life, who will notify the appropriate elder.
If there are members of the group that have struggled to connect, but still desire to be in a Missional Community, please contact the Pastor of Missional Life, and we can determine if they would be a better fit in a different group.
HOW DO WE ENCOURAGE RECONCILIATION WITH EACH OTHER?
When leaders hear of schisms within the group, they should handle this in the manner laid out in Scripture.
The leader should facilitate the offended parties to get together and discuss their differences, preferable with the help of an elder (unless they feel qualified to handle the discussion).
As a leader, be reminded that you already have the approval of God the Father through Jesus Christ, so you do not need to be accepted or approved by all of your members. Your goal is their sanctification, not your comfort.
If the health of the group would be protected by separating group members, please contact the Pastor of Missional Life, and we can determine together the best next steps.
HOW DO WE INTEGRATE CHILDREN INTO THE LIFE OF THE MISSIONAL COMMUNITY?
Integrating children into the life of your Missional Community can be one of the most difficult tasks for the leader.
There are two ditches to avoid:
Children being integrated in inappropriate environments to the point that they are distracting
to the task at hand.
Children are so disconnected that they do not benefit from the life of the Missional Community.
Remember that Jesus used children often as an illustration for those who are welcomed into the Kingdom. We can learn a lot from the faith of children as we integrate them into Missional Community life.
INTEGRATION OF CHILDREN INTO MISSIONAL COMMUNITY LIFE
Group leaders are encouraged to use any opportunity available to integrate children into the life of the Missional Community.
Some good opportunities to do this are:
Gatherings with a focus on family
Gatherings with a focus on mission
Use the schedules of the children in your group to help guide mission and service opportunities
(sports games, extra-curricular activities, birthday parties, school service, etc.).
Use flex weeks to have a night specifically geared for children. You can also utilize group
members to serve on these nights.
*The Jesus Storybook Bible is a great tool to use for this.
For group members with teenagers, we typically recommend that they determine the maturity level of their child and allow them to engage as they feel is appropriate.
THE HURDLE OF CHILDCARE
Childcare can be a hurdle for consistent gathering together as a group. Summit Crossing seeks to help with this by providing a $7/hour reimbursement (up to 3 hours) for each family every time the Missional Community gathers.
There are two main ways groups typically handle childcare:
Everyone is responsible for finding their own sitters and arranging childcare.
The group decides on a sitter and provides childcare together for the whole group.
We are in the midst of developing a list of childcare workers that will be background checked by Summit Crossing, though ultimately, each parent is responsible to vet and approve the sitter they get for their children.
This list will be a Google Sheets document that will be kept updated and available to use for all Missional Community leaders.
HOW DO WE HANDLE BUSY SEASONS OF LIFE AS A MISSIONAL COMMUNITY?
There is no silver bullet when it comes to handling busy seasons of life as a group. There is value in continuing to press in with your core during these seasons, even if the group is smaller than it is at other times. This can be a great season to focus on building deeper relationships with those in your group who are well connected.
Here are some tips for how to handle those times:
Be upfront and honest with your group. Recognize that everyone is busy and acknowledge this
Remind the group during these seasons of their family identity and that sometimes family is
Also remind the group that the goal is abiding in Jesus, not being a perfect family. Rest in the
fact that Jesus has made us family even if we don’t see each other as often as we would like.
Encourage the group to help you come up with ideas to be family and go on mission during the
busy seasons of life.
Remove the barrier that says the entire group must be present for the gathering to be a
success. The Missional Community is made up of people, not events.
LOVING YOUR NEIGHBORS AS A MISSIONAL COMMUNITY
HOW DO WE LEAD OUR GROUP ON MISSION?
As leaders, you must first remember that it is not your job to force anyone to go on mission. This is an impossible task that only the Spirit of God can lead and direct.
Your job as a leader is to:
Provide missional opportunities for the group.
Disciple the group toward God’s heart for mission, from our neighborhoods to the nations.
Depending on the makeup of your group, you will most likely spend the majority of your missional efforts doing one or the other.
PROVIDE MISSIONAL OPPORTUNITIES FOR THE GROUP
Going on mission together as a group is a great opportunity to live out your collective identity as servant missionaries of God.
Depending on your season of life and giftings as a leader, this can be challenging. If this is the case for you, set yourself a realistic goal regarding going on mission as an entire group.
Utilize people in your group who have the gifts of evangelism and/or administration to lead these missional opportunities for your group.
For updated ideas to get plugged in to various local ministries, please visit mySC3.org and click the button labeled Go on Mission. Fill out the interest form and you will be connected with a leader to help you plan the mission opportunity.
Don’t feel as if you have to commit to an ongoing partnership (though that is definitely a great goal). Sometimes it can be as simple as touring a local non-profit ministry and learning about what they do. This puts the opportunity in front of members of your group even if the entire group cannot consistently serve together with that ministry.
We encourage leaders to use the opportunities made available by the staff and elders of Summit Crossing to provide mission opportunities for your group. As these Local & Global Outreach opportunities (awareness events, service days, etc.) are made available, they will be announced, and as a leader, you can encourage your group to engage together in these church-wide outreach opportunities.
Another opportunity to lead people on mission is by doing a group fundraiser for people in our body who are raising money to go on a short-term global mission trip.
DISCIPLE THE GROUP TOWARD GOD’S HEART FOR MISSIONS
NEIGHBORHOODS TO NATIONS
If your season of life or the group’s season of life does not allow for group mission on a regular basis, then leaders are encouraged to spend their time discipling the group toward God’s heart for mission, locally and globally through their monthly missional-focused gathering.
Some ideas for this gathering are:
Invite someone into your group who has recently been on a global mission trip to share.
Invite someone who will be going on a global mission trip soon into your group to share and to pray over them as they go.
Invite a leader of a local non-profit ministry into your group to share about their passion for what God has called them to do.
Adopt a missionary as a group and spend this time reading their newsletter and praying for them and their ministry. Set up a video call with this missionary and have them update your group.
Spend an evening raising awareness about unreached people groups in the world and pray for God to send laborers. Visit joshuaproject.net/pray/unreachedoftheday/today to see an unreached people group. The site lists information to learn about the people group and has prayer directives to lead your time. For more information about this or to schedule a pastor or qualified teacher to come lead your group and teach on this, please contact the Pastor of Missional Life.
Use your evening to discuss and pray toward opportunities for mission locally in the everyday stuff of life for your group members. Discuss where God has placed them and pray together toward God using them in those areas. Use the Mission Awareness Guide on mySC3.org under the Resource Hub. Click MC Leader Resources and you will find the guide there. This can be an ongoing rhythm for your group.
As leaders, you are encouraged to utilize people in your group who have giftings and passion in these areas to lead this time together so as the leader, you are not bearing the full weight of leading this effort.
TRAIN ON HOW TO SHARE YOUR STORY
A helpful starting place for equipping your group members to go on mission is to teach them how to share their story with Jesus as the hero.
If your group members do not understand their place in the broader story of God, then mission will simply be a duty, not a privilege.
You can find the How to Share Your Story resource at mySC3.org under the Resource Hub button. To have a pastor or qualified teacher lead this time for your group, please contact the Pastor of Missional Life.