I just finished The Search to Belong, by Joseph R. Myers, and it quickly moved towards the top the list of books I want our leadership team to read.
Myers develops this idea of 4 spaces where people grow and relate. Public space, social space, personal space, and intimate space.
One of the key points I learned related to our church. While Sundays work pretty well at this point for social space, and kinship groups provide a great place for personal space, we need to do a better job at providing social space. As a staff, we are already working on how to fit these types of events into our calendar.
Our clam bake this past week (despite the rain), demontrated the importance of these type of gatherings. When our church was smaller, it was easy for Liz & I to invite any new families over to the house for dinner. At our current size, we’ve found that for most people, that is an uncomfortable jump. Moving from a place where a person can have some anonymity to sitting at the dinner table in my house it too much of a leap…it would be for me.
The Search to Belong dealt with a bunch of other items around the issue of these 4 spaces, and I know for me it really helped how I look at all of my relationships.