“When two of you get together on anything at all on earth and make a prayer of it, my Father in heaven goes into action. And when two or three of you are together because of me, you can be sure that I’ll be there.”Matthew 18:19-20, MSG
Two or three.
It doesn’t seem like enough, does it? In a society that tracks success by titles, number of followers, fans, and subscribers, two or three seems like a failure.
One thing I’ve noticed in my life is that God doesn’t call me to be in just one kind of community. There have been seasons where I’ve been part of something big – where the community is several thousand meeting world-wide for the same reason and connecting because they share a passion for Jesus. And I love that so much – the body of Christ, coming together, sisters all worshipping together. And I’ve been called to be part of large conference communities, joining several hundred women who all share a passion for using their God-given gifts to change the world -while having fun on Twitter and eating chocolate and cupcakes.
But when it comes down to it? When I really look at the kind of community that draws me deeply, consistently, authentically, reliably to God? It’s the small moments. It’s those two women whom God puts in my path at the conference who follow up, email, call, Skype and invite me into their lives.
It’s the one-on-one friendship with a mentor who loves me enough to tell me Truth that isn’t comfortable, the one who holds me accountable in the comfort of her home and loves my child as much as I do. It’s the three sisters who have decades of history with me who are always there on the other side of my email, ready with an encouraging word, a cheer, a prayer, a note to tell me “no, you’re not going crazy – kids just do those things.”
I’ve thought a lot about the desire of my heart to be part of something big but the call on my life to dig deeper into the small spaces. When we look at Jesus’ life in the Bible, it shows a lot about community. Sure, Jesus had thousands of followers. He changes lives in big ways in big crowds. But the moments that stand out to me more are when Jesus is with his closest followers. The 12. Or the three. Teaching, praying with, praying for – living life together. Sometimes I get so caught up in what people say I have to do to build a platform, the kind of numbers required to be successful, that I lose site of the fact that there is blessing in the small.
Where two or three are gathered. That’s all it takes.
Debra Bacon says
Crystal – I loved this post. Totally wrapping community up in all it’s layers. Thank you for these words of encouragement. Whether big or small, we all matter. Blessings
I just love this Crystal.You know how much I love your heart and your gift in drawing people into community. I’ve been pulling back. And it’s not because I don’t love big sloppy glorious community, I do. But I feel called to the small. It’s something the Lord has been working in me since I started this blog. Maybe it’s the introvert or maybe it’s just the way I’m wired but I feel God’s pleasure when I’m doing the small things. Sometimes the unnoticed things. When I was jumping through the “hoops” you’re supposed to to build platform and be a good steward of this writing thing, I felt stress and anxiety and I know there are people who are supposed to have a huge platform and God is at work in their words in a different (not better) way. So I’m not even saying small is better. It’s just different. And I wish we’d all be faithful where we’re called instead of trying to position ourselves every which way. I think then, we might just change the world. And I’m not going to lie, sometimes that’s hard, because well, the flesh likes glory. But I’d gladly be your one or two. That’s where I’m home. Here I go, hijacking your comments again. I just love you, you know that right?
Amen!! Great post!
Elizabeth Anne May says
I love this, Crystal. It’s perfect for exactly where I am right now… I’ve been thinking that because I just reached the one-year blogging anniversary –holy, moly, I think it’s today!– that I *should* be farther along than I am. Yet, the main pull I felt out of my first Christian women’s conference in July was that I should start a women’s Bible study in my home. And, I feel the pull to savor and serve there, that little handful of 4-5 women weekly — and my “tens” of subscribers 🙂
Love. It is truly about the intimate moments that can change a life! Thank you for reminding me of the importance of small groups! Have a blessed day!
Oh my gosh. This is so true, so powerful. Thank you so much for saying it just the way you did!
Oh the simple truth in that “blessing in the small” – The big, the overwhelming is one of my biggest fears about Allume – sometimes when there’s too much going on anxiety sets in… and well it’s not pretty… I’ve been asking God to show me where and who to find when I need the small and unhurried and I am trusting that He will. I am so glad you are part of my life friend. And so grateful that you are one of the people that I can turn to when I need the hard TRUTH… Hugs to you today.
I’ve been praying on this same thing – “the desire of my heart to be part of something big but the call on my life to dig deeper into the small spaces”. It can feel conflicting at times, can’t it? What I love more than anything about these communities and relationships is how God uses us, right where we are in different spaces & time zones, to show each other that we aren’t alone. In our struggles and in our successes. You are so right, two or three is all it takes. xxoo