We’ve found that it’s a good idea for groups to look at their shared values, expectations, and commitments right off the bat so that every member starts on the same page.
At EastLake Church, groups exist to help people group in friendship and faith.
This is true of our group too: We are here to grow in friendship and our faith.
In efforts to get the most of our time together this group season, we want everyone to try and come consistently to group and to communicate if we need to miss a week.
At EastLake Church, we value safe environments. Here is what this means for your group:
- There are no perfect people allowed. While we don’t suggest anyone gets transparent on week one about personal issues, we do encourage everyone to authentically show up each week.
- We are all in process therefore we should plan to be patient and gracious toward one another.
- While we aim to show care about what is happening in one another’s lives, and we hope to encourage one another in practical and life-giving ways, this group is not going to solve people’s problems. When and if we want people to speak into our current situation, we can directly ask for wisdom and ideas.
- We want everyone to share from the heart, but we don’t want this to be place we throw others under the bus. Let’s be considerate and careful about the way in which we talk about others.
- There is rarely just one right or wrong answer to a discussion question. Most often there are several different perspectives and facets to one questions. We make room for the various ideas people bring to the table. The goal of most questions is to get us thinking about Jesus, God, the Bible, relationship, growth and life.
- We give each other permission to respectfully ask difficult questions and cheer each other on toward real life change.
- We all have our doubts, curiosities, and questions about God. We make space for them here.
- We don’t monopolize the conversation; we take turns.
- Friendships take time and happen organically; we don’t rush the process.
- We share ownership of this group. There are various ways each member can volunteer — e.g. snacks, sending reminders, taking weekly attendance, organizing childcare, plan fun events, and so on.
- What is shared in our group stays in our group. If something is shared that presents a concern that needs further input, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
In addition, to our Group Values here are some important ground rules:
Groups are not for selling products, raising funds, or political pitches.
- If you represent a career or a product in your professional life, you can discuss this outside the group on a personal or relational level. But please respect that no one wants the group to become a sales or fundraising pool.
- This is not a voting box so don’t turn our group into the next political debate. Leave that up to CNN.
- Groups are not dating services. Though people have met and married through our groups, this is not a dating service.