God's Plan In the Church:
CHRISTIANS NURTURING CHRISTIANS
by David Chadwell
Explain the common meaning of this statement: "I don't feel like I belong here?" Is there
a difference between "feeling like" that you do not belong and actually not belonging? If
a difference exists, explain it.
Explain the significance of the statement, "I do not feel like I belong here," in regard to
- Feeling accepted for being yourself
- Feeling like you matter as a person
- Sensing a degree of importance and significance to others as a person
- Feeling like others honestly care about your life
- Feeling like others are serious about knowing and understanding you as a
- Sensing that others have empathy for your struggles
- Sensing that others regard your situations and needs as real
- Feeling that you have something in common with others
State four things that make you "feel like you belong" in a congregation.
State four things that make you "feel like you do not belong" in a congregation.
What will make the following Christians feel like he or she belongs in this congregation?
- A teenager
- A struggling teenager
- A college student in transition
- A single adult
- A young married couple
- A young family with young children
- A family with teenagers
- A family experiencing family problems
- A single parent family
- A divorced Christian
- A Christian fighting a disease
- A physically impaired Christian
- A struggling Christian
- A member with no family in the region.
- A member who has recently been converted
- A member who has recently moved to the area
To maintain an environment in a community of diverse Christians that produces a
genuine sense of belonging for everyone, certain basics are essential.
- The person must feel loved and wanted.
- The person must have his or her faith in God nurtured.
- The person must have a "connection" with the life of the congregation.
- The person must have easy, simple access to serving and getting involved.
- The person must have his or her basic spiritual needs met.
- The person must have a circle of friends.
- The person must feel close enough to some other Christians to pray with them.
- The person must know that he or she will be missed if not actively a part.
- Worship must encourage the person to praise God.
- Bible study and classes must help the person address the realities of his or
her every day life.
The elders cannot produce and sustain that environment. Nor can the staff. Nothing
less than the entire community of believers can produce and sustain that environment.
There are at least two relevant questions. (1) What are others doing to produce and
sustain that environment for me? (2) What am I doing to produce and sustain that
environment for other Christians?
Christians Nurturing Christians Study Guide (lesson 12)
Wednesday evening Bible class, Summer Quarter 1999
West-Ark Church of Christ, Fort Smith, AR
Copyright © 1999
Permission is granted to freely copy and distribute with text unchanged, including author's name.
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