By Eric Warren

One of the greatest facets of sports, in my opinion, is the sense of community.  Whether we’re talking about a team sport or an individual competition, you are surrounded by those who are like-minded, passionate, and driven.  Even when it’s just you against the rest of the field, as in a sport like golf, you are spurred onward to deliver the best of what you’ve got.  I grew up in an athletic family where even within the ranks of my own siblings, we were driven to compete.  When playing a team sport, you bond through adversity and success and grow together with your teammates in ways that are so unique.  This sense of community is special.  To have people around you that you know will drive you, they will push you forward, so that when all is said and done, you can look back on the race that you’ve run and be astonished at the body of work you just put forth.
Is this not something that we’ve all thirsted for at one time or another, if not frequently?  In the creation narrative of Genesis, we are given an account of God hanging the stars in the sky, forming the Earth and all of the creatures that inhabit the lands, and then He made Man.  He made the birds of the sky and He said, “Good.”  He made the fish of the sea and he said, “Good.”  Then He came to Man and he said, “Very good.”  We go on in chapter two to read specifically about both Man and Woman created, and despite God forming Man and claiming “Very good” over him, God recognized a truth that resounds throughout time even to this day, and that is that this life cannot and should not be done alone; thus God gave Adam the gift of Eve.  Man was so fortunate to be given the image of God the Father.  One would think that He could stop there, but no, God knew that for His Glory, there should be a multiplicity among people, a multiplicity of image bearers.  Christ amplifies this truth in Matthew’s gospel in the discourse on the Church.

20 For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.”                                                                                      -Matthew 18:20

Christ recognizes this truth, that we are hard-wired for community, all the while affirming another truth.  Where multiple image-bearers of His gather, He will be there also.  How could this be in the least bit undesirable? The presence of the Savior of the world, promised to us through this thing called fellowship.  We are not talking about a weekly meeting where a few words are spoken, some read, and everyone calls it quits until the same time next week.  We are talking radical life change through one another under the name of Christ.  We are talking about first responders showing up at the hospital upon hearing the news of your bringing a wonderful new addition into this world.  We are talking about brothers and sisters who in no way are related but couldn’t be any closer even if they were.  This is what we mean by “doing life together.”
Group Connect is drawing closer.  We hope to attract incredible amounts of people who are thirsty for this type of family.  Oftentimes, curiosity is piqued through videos, web posts, and other forms of promotion, but we hope that this event will ignite a fiery passion in the souls of many and reveal to them that they have an entire church body that is so willing to pour into them on an intimate level.  We hope that this event will tie those who are unconnected to our family through LIFE Groups.  So, once again, we implore you, as a leader, to join us in prayer, to rally beside us in hopes of achieving something truly wonderful and life changing.
Specific Things to Pray For:

    • Pray for dissatisfaction for those who are currently “going it alone.”
    • Pray for that dissatisfaction to stir hearts toward action and willingness to plug in.
    • Pray for a relentless love to fill the hearts of those tied to this event so that they may be poured out on those seeking LIFE Groups.