Praying and Playing
Each year, the NCC staff goes on two retreats. One is a planning retreat in the fall, where we brainstorm, scheme, and visioneer for the upcoming year. The other is Pray and Play in the summer.
Best. Time. Ever.
We prayed hard. And we played hard. We returned loving one another more and loving God more.
I'm convinced that more community is developed in 15 minutes of prayer or 15 minutes of play than in 15 minutes of book discussion. It's the kind of community that is developed when you are shoulder to shoulder with people and not simply face to face.
Ryan and I were in New York last weekend to pick up some new karaoke cds for the retreat, and we dropped an absurd and slightly embarrassing amount of cash on them. Ryan's response? "Think of all the community it will build."
He was right. We all understand and acknowledge the importance of prayer in our small groups (even if we don't always practice it well). But I don't know that we have a good grasp on the theology of fun. As silly as it sounds, a little karaoke, volleyball, cornhole, tennis, softball, spades, Settlers of Catan, kayaking, ping pong, and soccer might be the most spiritual thing you can do sometimes.
It's a good reminder for small group leaders. How much are you praying? How much are you playing?