When a crisis happens in life many people respond with the thought “I don’t have time to meet” or “Life is tough right now and I just can’t meet.”  In actuality you do need to be around small group.  You need to have time to process, to be loved on, to have a shoulder to cry on, to have people who love you around you.

The Small Group is a help in hurting times .  Meeting is not only about the material or the required meetings times per month, it is about giving people who are hurting time to get into conversations about the things that are hurting them.  Dropping off food is great and necessary, but you can’t hear the hurts of the person in a doorstep, casserole drop-off.  Be there for each other. Allow opportunities (enough time together) for conversations to go beyond “how are you doing.”

Many people who have sinned are embarrassed to attend small group or church, when what they really need to do is get back in the presence of God asap. Isolation is Satan’s playground.  When we have messed up or have a family crisis we want seclusion.  This only increases our loneliness and openness to the devil.  Small Group is a place of openness, forgiveness, comfort and love.

A family member of one of your group members dies.  Well, you call off the meeting because life is difficult right now and they “got a lot going on.”  They may feel like or even verbally state that “the last thing I want to do is meet.” Of course they are busy.  Of course they “don’t want to meet.” These responses further express why you have to spend time with them to help them process, to help them grieve, to have a small group around them that is like family.  None of us need to be alone (although we say want to) when depressive times occur.  We need God and we need people who represent God to be around us.  If the leader of the small group is the one hurting, step up and ask them if it is okay for you to do the scheduling of group time and maybe even facilitate the meetings.

So the next time you hear one of these responses from someone in your group, know that this is your time, your responsibility to step up and keep the group wrapped around the hurting.