This week I went to the beach with some of my small group boys. I had the day off, my wife was working so I had the whole day to just chill. So the beach it was! One of the boys asked if he could bring a friend to hang out. He did.

I brought a cooler full of drinks and told the guys they were responsible for their own lunches. We had a great time just hanging out, body surfing, talking. As the day was wrapping up, the friend whom I just met that day asked me, “So you guys are a small group? What does that mean exactly?” I explained to him what we did and what church we were from and he told me he has not gone to church since the 6th grade. He asked if he would be able to come check out what we do. “Of course”, I said. And that was that.

On my way home it got me thinking about how we make connections with our core students friends:

  • When we provide the opportunity for our students to hang out, they will.
  • When our students know that our group is open and a safe place to invite friends, they will.
  • When sometimes we provide an atmosphere that is open and fun and there is no real agenda besides just hanging out and having fun it can intrigue a student who is not used to church maybe think differently about what they once thought about it.
  • Having fun with our students is key. Having fun breaks down walls. It breaks down a new students walls as well. We had a great conversation and he got invited to come to hang out with the group on the weekend services.
  • You can really tell that students who do not go to church are searching for something. I really think a big part of that is real, genuine relationships. Both with friends and with God. If we provide the opportunity for them to see what that could look like, it can and will lead to life change.

I love hanging out with my boys. I love meeting their friends. I love providing opportunities for friends to come and hang out and are interested in the community our small groups provide.