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With the holidays coming up faster than the stores can get out their holiday decorations, it can be difficult to keep the momentum in your small group, that you worked so hard on, to continue. Everyone in the group is so busy with parties, shopping, baking, visiting family and many other added celebrations. My initial thoughts are to go with the flow and just take a break for the holidays; surely my group would like to have one thing off their plate!
But then I began to think about the unique community I live in…a military town. Many of the people in my small group are military and are far from family. They are missing their families even more during this time. The holidays can be a time of heightened stress and loneliness if you are away from family. There are many that are experiencing great sadness if this is the first holiday missing loved ones that have passed.
The Holy Spirit brought to mind, with the hustle and bustle of the season; meeting with my small group family may be just the thing to bring peace, stability and connection into this overwhelming season. Remember, our God is the God of fellowship, connection, love, and community. So what if we didn’t do our usually study but created some meaningful group time to help us all recharge, praise God, and truly find joy in the season.
Through my own experience and that of others I’ve learned some valuable ways to help people. Having our eyes open to opportunities in our small group family facing loneliness, overwhelm, and hurt, to survive the holiday is the first step. Thomas Edison said, “Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.” He’s right! It will take a bit more of our time in an already hectic schedule to be there for others. But, the payoff is priceless! Eyes open, and you can incorporate these 4 additional tips into your holiday small group meetings that just might be the biggest gift someone receives this season.
“Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work” Thomas Edison
1. Remembering Holiday Traditions
During your small group time you can share your family traditions for the holidays. Remembering and sharing them rather than trying to escape the memories of what you are missing can bring a sense of joy and togetherness.
Being a Comfort To Others
You know the power a smile or a hug can have even on a normal day. During the holidays they mean even more. Taking time to listen, empathize and really “see” them will make them feel loved and can bring an opportunity for you to share not only God’s love with them but yours as well.
3. Have a party
Your group has something to celebrate. A potluck and game night—So fun! This might even be a good time to invite prospective members and neighbors to check out the group and possibly join for your next study.
4. Serve together as a group
Even with everything going on the holiday season offers many opportunities to serve the underprivileged in the community. Homeless shelters, soup kitchens, and children’s homes have a lot of needs, especially during the holidays.
The holidays can truly be a time of Joy and celebration when everyone feels welcome and part of the family…I’m convinced providing a safe home of encouragement and support to those finding the holidays overwhelming is exactly what we opened our hearts to when we said “Yes” to small groups.
Related Article: 7 Ways Your Group Can Celebrate this Holiday Season