Growing up in South Dakota we would have to leave very early in the morning to travel to our basketball, baseball, football, soccer, or "you name it" games. So my mom would usually let us grab breakfast from McDonald's on the way and occasionally we would have time to go in and eat.
When we went inside even through a groggy haze I remember seeing the same group of old guys sitting in McDonald's sipping coffee and swapping stories. Most of these stories I shouldn't repeat, but let's just say they made a teenager giggle. They'd sit around talking and drinking until one by one they would leave for the day. Every time one would leave the group would say "See ya Bob" or "Catch you tomorrow Fred" knowing that the next day would bring them back together.
Fast forward to Frankfort, Illinois 2011 and walk into any McDonalds early in the morning and I willing to bet you will find a similar group. A group of old timers swapping stories, sipping coffee, and talking about life. And whether they think about it or not they have a great support system for one another sheltered safely under the Golden Arches.
This just goes to show that everyone needs or has a small group.
It seems that one of the scariest requests you can make of someone in the church world is to "join a small group". Say those words and people retract back in their personal shells like a turtle at the zoo. Somehow the thought of willingly putting yourself in a group of peopel to discuss life seems so odd and foreign, but from what I've seen it's completely natural!
Let's be honest if a group of guys that lived in a generation much less open and "feelings orientated" as ours today can get together and talk life I think we probably could too. And listen, no one makes these guys get up at 4:30 am to come down to McD's. They do it willingly! For some reason they desire to be around their friends. For some reason they are drawn toward community.
The reason is because that is how God designed us. He created us to be in community with each other and living life together. He never envisioned us pulling in our garages, turning off the car, and shutting the door before we got out. In fact His plan is exactly the opposite.
"The Lord God said, 'It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.'"- Genesis 2:18
"Let us not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another." – Hebrews 10:25
I know sometimes the thought of going to some random person's house you never met and walking in with your rice crispy treats and untouched Bible could be intimidating. Man it was for me too at first! But what is even scarier is thought of trying to manage through this life on my own.
So maybe we all need to take a little advice from the old guys at McDonalds and get in a small group. If you haven't gotten in one and you attend Parkview why not click on this link?
If you are reading this somewhere else I'll just challenge you to jump into a group somewhere and start digging into life with some people. I know you will not regret it and who knows maybe you will learn to like Egg McMuffins too!