- Where have you found a sense of belonging?
- Watch the https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tgzdfda7OfE&t=1s (2m 49s)
God has given us a need for community—and he has given us the place where that need for community is met: the church. The church is the family of God. We’re brothers and sisters in Christ. Christians of previous generations pass on their faith, stories, and traditions, which we build on. As you consider both the legacy of your church family and what your church family looks like today, it helps to trace a sort of “family tree.” Use these prompts to gain an understanding of your church family’s DNA.
- How did Dundonald get started?
- What has changed significantly in the history of Dundonald?
- Do you know who the elders are?
- Who’s been at Dundonald a long time and has stories you’d like to hear?
Read Ephesians 2 v 18 – 3 v 19
- What images does Paul use to describe the church in 2 v 18-22? What does he want us to see about the church’s identity?
- Paul’s mission is to preach to the Gentiles. What is his ultimate purpose, and the purpose of the church (3 v 1-13)?
- What does Paul pray for his readers (v 14-19)? Why do you think he includes the phrase “together with all the Lord’s holy people”—and how does that change your understanding of his prayer?
We all come to church with our own unique experiences. You may love the church and desire to commit more deeply and serve better. You may be sceptical and reluctant because of past experiences, but you believe God wants you in his church. You may be wounded and cautious, fearful even, because of damage inflicted on you through the church. You may be a brand-new believer, unsure what to think about church. Or you may be uprooted, having relocated from a place of familiarity to be dropped in a new town and new church where you hope to find a home.
- What is your personal history with church? Are there things which make you wary, afraid or sceptical?
- How does reflecting on the lengths God went to in order to establish His Church help us to know we belong?
- In our church, what does it look like to commit and belong? How could you encourage one another to do this? What rewards do you hope to reap?
- What’s the danger in not belonging to a specific local congregation?
- What will you pray for your church, based on the passage?
We praise you for giving us the Church as our place of family and community.
To those of us who are weary and in need of rest;
To those who are mourning and longing for comfort;
To those who often fail and need strength;
To all of us who sin and are in need of a Saviour;
Father, please make church that place; where we can find open doors, a heart-felt welcome from Jesus Christ through His people. Where we can find community, family, and belonging.
- Meditate on Ephesians 2 v 18-22 and ask that God would elevate your view of the church.
- Pray that you would grow in your identity as part of the local church family.
- If you are feeling disconnected, think about someone you could reach out to and ask for help with cultivating a sense of belonging.
- Commit to praying for our church, Dundonald, regularly.
- Book: Love Your Church (chapter 1) by Tony Merida
- Book: Belonging by Barnabas Piper
- Song: We are the Church by Awesome Cutlery