Tuesday, September 8, 2009

embarking on something new

Nathan and I (but more Nathan than me) are just about to leap into a new adventure at church. We have gone to Faith for two years, and during that time we have been involved in a wonderful connection class that we have grown in, been accepted by, and loved. But Faith has a philosophy that is almost like a trademark, that when we grow, we send out a new group and begin new things. We knew that applied to the church body in general, especially as it relates to planting new churches (Faith is a new church starting machine), but we found out that on a much smaller level, it also applies to connection classes.

We would have been great to sit fat and happy in our class for many, many more years to come, but when we were asked to really think and pray about teaching, we felt like it was something God was leading us to do. Not because we are spiritual giants, or excellent teachers, or because we have it all together. None of those things are true. But we felt like God was reminding us that He uses what He wants to use, not because we are perfect, but because since we are imperfect, He will be all the more obvious.

I can speak on behalf of Nathan and say this isn't exactly in our comfort zone. Some parts of the newness of it are scary. But it is also really, really exciting. We feel like God has laid on our hearts that this be a class where we can grow together in our relationships with God, be involved with our whole families in working in the community, and minister to each other through whatever life brings. For those brave enough to jump on board with a pair of total novices, we will learn together. We are so grateful for the people who have already committed, even before the first lesson, to be a part of it. A real step of faith for sure =).

This Sunday, our first week, Nathan is going to talk about, why is a class important? What is it that is so special about a connection class that makes it worth staying an extra hour in addition to the Worship service? What kinds of things happen best in small group that are much more difficult to achieve in the large group setting?

We have some ideas, but I'd love to hear yours! If you haven't ever been involved in a class, why not? What reasons have kept you from it, and what would encourage you to want to go? If you are in a class, what are you most excited about? What things do you think are most important and what keeps you coming back? We would love the input. And if you just happen to be looking for a class, the door is wide open and we'd love to have you stop by.

9 comments:

Pat n Fl said...

Angie,

I am so excited for you and Nathan. I teach 2 yr old in Sunday School but in the past have been involved in adult Sunday School or teaching class. Here is my views on why a class is inportant to me.

1. It is where you establish relationships with others or connect with others since it is call a connection class.
2. It is where you can share what God is doing and teaching you in your life. (you never know who else in the class is going thru the same thing but is timid about speaking up.
3. It is where you can minister and be minister to. In other words we can sometimes get lost in the service (and sometimes that is what we want) where there are several hundred or more people in attendance but in a small group you don't get lost as much. You realize when someone is missing and can reach out to them.

I will be praying for you and Nathan as God uses you and your faminly in this new roll.

PS. I have been reading your blog since before Poppy Joy was born but do not always comment. I used your idea for the Christmas books last year and have done several more things along the same line since. God is using your sweet family in ways you may never know this side of heaven.

boltefamily said...

Howard and I are leaders of a church small group...is that a similar thing?

Angie said...

Kristy,

I should have explained that better! Yes, connection class is basically another word for Sunday School or small group. It meets before or after the worship service each week, but it is the group that you do all social and small group type things with at church. Different name, same concept.

Chris and Emily said...

Hey Angie. Chris and I lead a small group at our church too - we took a year off last year and just enjoyed being in one but are back to leading again this year. My church - sounds a bit like yours - raising up leaders..sending them out(small and big scale) and we love it. The community you get in a small group is so unbelievable...we say all the time after our journey with Cohen that community showed us God's love in ways we may not have been able to see otherwise.

So excited for you guys as you embark on this new adventure.

Anonymous said...

what hour and what ages will you be leading?

Angie said...

the class is 20's and 30's and we are meeting at 9:15.

Penny said...

Like Pat said, my favorite part of a small class is being able to share and hear how God is moving in our lives. Sometimes, people don't/can't share in front of everyone. =)

Anonymous said...

Angie - THis is great you and Nathan will be such a blessing to this age group. I will be lifting you guys and the new class up in prayers. Livona

amanda said...

bear and i will be praying for you Sunday!