As a part of the Soma family, we often speak of living out our gospel identity in everyday rhythms of life (know the story, listen, bless, celebrate & suffer, eat, rest & work). In fact, much of what we do is not meant to add things to the schedule, but bring intentionality to the things we are already doing.
The following lists are a few practical examples of simple things you can begin doing to bring gospel intentionality to your schedule. Hopefully as you are reading through these examples it will spark ideas for your own life.
5 Practical Ideas to Know the Story
- Practice telling the story to your kids and spouse – get resources here
- Listen to others tell the story – Story of God Audio
- Have a night where each person in your MC shares their story in 10 minutes.
- Identify and write down the 4 major stories you see people believing in your city. Use Creation/Fall/Redemption/New Creation as an outline for this.
- Host a get to know your neighbors party where each person brings one artifact that has had a significant impact on their life. Have people share how it fits into their story.
Consider – Genesis 1:1-2, John 1:1, Psalm 1, 2 Timothy 3:16-17
5 Practical Ideas to Listen
- As you spend time in the word and prayer, write down what the Spirit is teaching you and share it with others in your life. Set aside time to reflect on what the Spirit is teaching you.
- Setup good boundaries for yourself in how you use your cellphone. You’re not going to listen well to the Spirit or to others if your constantly listening to Twitter/Facebook/Instagram/Pinterest/Email (repenting right there with you on this one).
- Pray before conversations or meetings, asking the Spirit to give you discernment for the upcoming conversation.
- Ask your spouse and people close to you how you could be a better listener. Take their feedback and apply it.
- Read through Romans and Galatians. Ask the Spirit to help you learn how to listen better and to recognize the leading of the Spirit and the leading of the flesh. Be aware of the what the flesh is like (demanding, impatient, anxious, angry, frustrated, lusting) so that you can run quickly to the Spirit for help.
Consider – Mark 1:35-37, John 16:7-15, Hebrews 1:1-3, Romans 1:20
5 Practical Ideas to Celebrate and Suffer
- Make a list of all the birthdays, anniversaries, and important dates of the people in your MC and neighborhood/workplace. Get those gifted in party planning to help you plan celebrations for those special days.
- Start a needs awareness network/Facebook group for your neighborhood so that people can communicate needs of people in the neighborhood and your MC family can respond as needs come up. Encourage your other neighbors to join and help.
- Find a major theme to throw a neighborhood party once a quarter (examples – Spring – Easter, Summer – July 4th, Fall Halloween/Thanksgiving, Winter – Christmas). Try to line them up with the major holidays celebrated by the people in your city. Hang in there and do it regularly to create a rhythm of celebration in your neighborhood. Make it something people look forward to each year.
- Get someone with decorating and party planning skills to volunteer with you to help struggling families in your neighborhood or part of the city. Utilize the variety of gifts in your missional community to help pull it off.
- Offer to be the point person at your workplace to help other co-workers when they experience difficult times. Be the person who helps line up meals, or line up other needs to help them when things are rough.
Consider – Romans 12:15, Leviticus 23, Acts 2:42-47, Hebrews 10:24-25
5 Practical Ideas to Bless
- Bake cookies and pass them out to your neighbors with a note that lets them know you are praying for them. Let them know if there is anything they need you are willing to help.
- Start a lawn mowing group of guys that spends one Saturday a month mowing yards of people who need the help (widows, disabled, elderly, single moms, people without a mower) in your MC’s neighborhood.
- Create a gift basket with goodies in it for people who’s work typically goes un noticed around you (trash men, janitors, food service people, mechanic, etc.). Let them know your thankful for them and you appreciate what they do.
- Offer to keep the kids of another couple in your community once a month so that they can go out for a date night.
- Leave a couple favorite grocery items of someone else in your MC’s on their front porch. Don’t tell them its from you just say its from the MC family.
Consider – Genesis 12:1-3, Ephesians 1:22-23, 2:8-10, 1 Peter 2:12
5 Practical Ideas to Eat
- Start a monthly dinner night at your house that has an open invitation for anyone that wants to to join and bring people.
- Find people in your church community who love cooking and get them to help others grow in their appreciation for fine food.
- Set a goal to have more meals with neighbors/coworkers than you are currently having. Talk it out with your MC and get advice one what is a good starting point.
- Make a schedule each month with the nights you want to host people for meals. Prayerfully consider who you will share a table with (neighbors/co-workers/MC family).
- Start a supper club with people in your neighborhood or network of relationships. Have each person in the club signup to host a night. Have the host share the recipe with the rest of the group when they come over. Spend time during the meal sharing things you are thankful for building in a rhythm of intentionality into your meals together.
Consider – Leviticus 23, Matthew 6:11, 26:17-30, Acts 2:46-47, Romans 12:13
5 Practical Ideas to Rest and Work
- Identify your favorite hobbies and prayerfully consider how you can both invite people from your church family into those while also engaging not yet believers (Rec center basketball, book club,
- Start a regular park day twice a month. Send out invites to anyone that wants to come and be there at the same time every couple of weeks.
- Read Tim Keller’s book on work – LINK
- Create a space for people in your part of the city to express their creative talents. This could be an art group, music group, crafts group, poetry group or really whatever the people in your area are doing to express themselves creatively.
- Take a look at your schedule and the way you are spending your time. Make sure that you have a solid rhythm of work and rest. Share your schedule with your missional community and seek wise council on how you can get your schedule in a good rhythm.
Consider – Genesis 1-2, Deuteronomy 5:12, Mark 2:23-28, Hebrews 4, Colossians 3:27