Something I’ve really been reflecting on and thinking about recently is community, specifically, my community and what I really value about it. I came up with the top 4 things I need from community that are so important to me staying sane in ministry and in life!
Encouragement: In life and in ministry, we need someone to lift us up. We need people that know us well enough to help speak life into the parts of us that need it most. Whether it is celebrating our victories with us, or reminding us that we aren’t all that bad, we need our community to encourage us and pray for us.
Challenge: I don’t know about you guys, but I need a real kick in the butt… pretty often! One of the big perks to having intimate community is that they can see past a lot of the junk we present and know the right questions to ask… whether we want to be asked them or not! They know the goals we are setting, see the potential in us, and push us to reach it.
Empathy: When things are really going south, sometimes we need someone to just be there with us and say, “yeah, that does suck.” Having people in our lives that aren’t quick to solve, but quick to be there with us when we get that harsh parent phone email or get out of the crummy meeting your head pastor, is key. Empathy can be something that can be hard to find, but is well worth the search!
Fun: This is perhaps the least talked about trait in healthy community, yet it is so important. We need people we can laugh with, be light-hearted with, and people to goof off with. We NEED it. Without fun, we drown. The phrase, “all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy” has gotten a weird reputation since The Shining but it is so true! If we are all work, we become dull and ineffective. We need time to recharge, regroup, and clown around.
What are characteristics that you value in community?