This originally appeared on whillschurch.org as a weekly devo.
Live Connected is perhaps the most difficult of the three (love, live, and serve). It’s the easiest to misunderstand and hardest to actually do.
There are two common misunderstandings of what “live connected” means. The first is a small group dedicated to the gaining of knowledge. Bible study, Sunday school, and most small groups are of this variety. We study the scriptures, we look and listen for insights and we will talk about how it COULD apply in real life. The other misunderstanding is a group dedicated to accomplishing a task. Ministry teams – youth, children, worship, tech team – any group that has an event or specific task to accomplish.
It’s possible to live connected with each of these two groups but most of the time it doesn’t happen. Why? Because to live connected is messy. It’s allowing other people access to our lives in a way that gives them the right and responsibility to speak truth to us and to love on us for the purpose of life change, to look more like Jesus. That’s the key difference between live connected and just a bible study or serving together. Life change, vulnerability, authenticity – these are necessary for live connected.
Take a look at your current small group experience. Is the purpose of that group life change? To challenge and love each other towards Christ-likeness? Or is it just the pursuit of more Bible knowledge? Or the accomplishment of a task? There’s nothing WRONG with those two other options. It’s just that those alone will not result in life change.
Why is live connected even necessary? Because we won’t naturally strive for life change on our own…at least long term. We need encouragement, a model, and even accountability for this to happen. We can’t “love our neighbor as ourselves” without others. Jesus modeled this for us.
It’s part of our mantra because we know that it will be impossible for us to be who God wants us to be without the ministry of others in our life. Impossible.