Best ways to build authentic community in your church
If you belong to church you know one thing for sure: the church is not the building or a series of events, it is the people. People create a community and for those who seek to build relationships with other church members, it often takes a lot of hard to make those relationships feel truly deep and fulfilling.
But that does not have to be the case! Church is meant to be one of the most fulfilling parts of a person’s life, so how do we achieve that?
How can we all help create a culture of authentic community in our churches? Let’s go over some of the best ways to create authentic community in your church.
One of the easiest ways to create a true sense of community within your church is to invite others from your church into your life. Invite other families over for dinner or a summer cookout, try to start a book club or a rec and ed sports league, or even ask if a neighbor who belongs to your church would like to join you on an afternoon stroll around your neighborhood. Inviting people into your life away from the church will lead to far more meaningful interactions within the church.
Often, the conversations that we have with people before and after worship never cross through that surface level. Phil Fischer of Jesus Lives knows that intentionality is a key force in creating community in church:
“When you interact with your fellow churchgoers, do not be afraid to ask real questions,” he says. “While it may feel awkward at first, it is important to dig deeper so that you can help to create a real sense of community in which people feel comfortable sharing their real selves to one another.”
Be open to learning
There is very little doubt that some adults feel the need to look like they have it all together. It can be hard to be vulnerable, especially around those who you are not fully comfortable with. One easy way to become more vulnerable is to be open about not knowing everything. Be open to learning about the teachings of Christ that you have not tackled. If we come across as prideful and unteachable, the roadmap to community will be far harder to cross.
Entering into any new relationships that go deeper than the surface level opens us up to the possibility of being hurt. That is a simple truth of being a loving person. It is not rare that that newfound vulnerability may eventually lead to a kind of hurt. If you are hurt, knowing how to forgive is a crucial part of allowing the community within your church to grow. Instead of letting those offenses dig deeper into yours and create grudges and disdain, be quick to forgive and look for reconciliation so that your new relationship can continue to grow deeper and deeper.