When it comes to the spiritual dimension of life, why is it that some people thrive while others dive?
As we meet with Young Professionals, particularly those who identify as followers of Christ, almost without exception we hear them say, “I can’t find community.”
It’s a curious statement to make if you think about it because there are no shortage of good churches and small groups to connect with. How hard can it be to find community?
As we probe further, however, they often explain that they can’t find community like they had when they were involved with Cru in college. Or they can’t find community like they had in high school, or in a particular youth group.
Somehow, the opportunities for connection, growth and development after college aren’t exactly what they expected because they don’t mirror the environment and community that they had previously experienced.
For many Young Professionals, getting connected to a deep and meaningful spiritual community has been a frustrating and disappointing endeavor.
As we’ve thought about this issue of growth and development, we’ve concluded that there are 5 ingredients necessary to a person’s environment that make it substantially more likely they will thrive spiritually and live with purpose and meaning.
These 5 ingredients are:
- Kingdom Vision – in order for a person to thrive spiritually over the long-term AND make an impact for Christ, they have to have a vision for God’s kingdom and be motivated to be a part of it.
- Team – Most of us tend to take on the level of commitment and passion that exists in the people around us. So by surrounding ourselves with other like-minded people who really want to make a difference for God, we’re more likely to step up our level of passion and commitment.
- Plan – if we have no plan for what we’re going to do to serve the Lord and make an impact, then nothing will happen.
- Coach – numerous studies have shown the value of a coach in helping a person realize a goal or fulfill a vision.
- Ongoing equipping and Development – people who are growing in character and personal development often have more to give.
For those who’ve been a part of a campus ministry like Cru or InterVarsity, these 5 ingredients were probably embedded within their community without them even being aware of it. The environment was tailor made for spiritual growth and development.
But after college, a community where these ingredients are readily present may be harder to find.
We want to help provide these key ingredients for Young Professionals so that they might get connected to a vibrant community and begin to thrive spiritually and live missionally.
We’ve recently launched something we’re calling Leadership Development Groups. These groups are not a Bible study but more like a professional cohort environment where Young Professionals meet monthly to process key biblical and life concepts together in a small group context.
Currently, Jen and I are each leading a group and we’re in our second month. So far, the response has been extremely positive as most of the Young Professionals we’re connecting with seem to agree that this is addressing a need that they’ve been seeking to meet for some time.
We’re pretty excited about the potential and we’re hoping to get new groups started in the coming months.
Would you pray for us and the current groups we’re leading as well as for the formation of new groups in the months to come?
Also, please pray for us to continue to think creatively about how we can provide these 5 key ingredients for Young Professionals in Orange County so that they might thrive spiritually and live missionally.
We are grateful for your prayers and your partnership with us!