Last night at Proximity we spent some time to reflect on 2017. Splitting up into small groups we discussed four questions:
1. What is something God taught you in 2017?
2. What is one experience of God that you have had?
3. What was a moment where you felt really loved by someone in 2017?
4. What was a moment where you felt loved someone well in 2017?
The moments we shared are moments worth pursuing. They are moments when we come into close proximity with God and into close proximity with each other, just as we were created to be. The vision for Proximity is to be a place where we can grow closer to God and grow closer to each other. It's a place where we can hear from God and experience him and where we can love and feel loved. And so what we asked was that the students all participate in making this happen. It is through their actions and attitudes that the culture of Proximity is shaped and so if they also want Proximity to be a place where they can grow closer to God and grow closer to each other than they need to buy in. Luckily they agreed that they want Proximity to be that kind of place too!
To help create this atmosphere we asked 2 thing of them to start:
First, we asked that all cell phones be kept in their pockets from 7-9. The exceptions were if they were receiving a call, if we were needing them for a game, or if they want to take a picture of the night. We would ask parents that if they need to get into contact with their youth during a night to call either Cole or myself and we will pass the phone to them. If you need our phone numbers then just ask one of us and we will gladly give it to you. We also gave them the option that if they know they will be unable to stay off their phone to give it to one of the leaders who will keep it safe for them during the night. If we see phones out and causing a distraction then we will give a warning to put it away and if it comes out again then we will take it for the night. The reason for this is that phones are a barrier to us growing closer to God and closer to each other as we cannot give our full attention to either when we are on our phones.
Second, we asked them to help us decide what we were going to talk about in our new series, "Faith?" They anonymously put in their questions about God, life, and faith and from that we are going to construct our series that we will go through for the year.
A good conversation to have with your students would be asking them any of those questions that we asked off the bat. What have they been learning from God? How have they been experiencing God? How have they felt loved or how have they loved others?