It’s no secret that Bethany is a large church.
This means, among other things, that we have amazing resources to share with our community, a large congregation that can rally together to meet others’ needs, and amazing teams of people who make ministries like Upward Sports, Celebrate Recovery, The Landing, KidZone and Bethany Youth Nation all possible.
But, since we can be honest in church, it’s important to realize that being a big church has the potential to make it difficult for us to feel connected. Have you ever felt that way?
As much as we sometimes like the idea of being anonymous, or even hidden, within the large number of people that make Bethany what it is, eventually we need to experience a meaningful connection with others. This is actually a key part of being a follower of Jesus. We find that Jesus consistently fostered connection and community with His disciples, helping them be more united with each other than they probably ever thought possible.
Our Home Churches exist in a large part for this very reason.
We deeply believe that we can’t follow Jesus well as strangers, and being acquaintances doesn’t go far enough either. What we need, and what God has wired into each of us, is a desire to know and be known deeply by a few others. I’m thoroughly convinced of this truth, but instead of just writing my thoughts, I’d much rather you read Ron’s story, and hear what being part of a Home Church has meant for him and his family.
When I was asked to say why Home Church was important to myself and our family, at first, I thought it would be a quick and easy little talk on most of the usual reasons for joining a group: Connection with other people, Bible study, and being more involved. However, after some reflection, I realized how truly important Home Church was for our family.
When we first moved to the area, we had a chance to visit a few churches in our area. After some looking around, we really liked what we saw at Bethany and started attending on a regular basis. As time went on, we attended the services regularly and were involved as best we could since, as most people do, we have a very busy life.
After about a year and a half though, we found that we were having a very hard time connecting with other people from the church. This was something that we, as a family, had enjoyed at our previous churches. We realized how important it was to have deeper relationships with others, and sharing our faith and daily struggles with life. It came to the point that we even talked about looking at moving to another church.
At this point, we decided to join a Home Church. It was exactly what we needed and a big answer to prayer. We were able to connect on a regular basis with others and it has really connected us with “our church.”
I would highly recommend joining a Home Church. It really is a great way to connect in our big church. It gives us a place to go that allows us to be part of a diverse group of people who have the same goal of serving God. Home Church is not primarily a social group, even though that happens. It is a place where we connect as fellow believers, and that is something that enables us to be part of the church.
If you’d like to know more about Home Church at Bethany, or if you’re interested in starting or joining one, one great place to start is actually to talk to friends or others you know who are already in a Home Church. Find out what they value about their Home Church, and what they experience there.
You can also check out our Home Church FAQ page at bethanycc.ca/homechurch to explore further, as well as click on the links to join, host, and even start a Home Church.
And, if you have further questions, you can always email our Group Life team at firstname.lastname@example.org, or come talk to us at the Next Steps area in the Foyer after any of our weekend services.
Grace and peace everyone!