If you’ll be gathering a Community Group at your home, here are some simple thoughts to make your experience as a host more rewarding and enjoyable:
Not only with your reverse cycle air conditioner; but also set the “Relational Temperature.” Create an “environment” that will be both welcoming and casual. Remember your objective is not to impress, but to make folks feel at home. As much as it is possible, remove any potential distractions from the room that would take away from the group discussion.
You just love your Rottweiler and Dobermans and Furry Cats…but your guests may feel differently. Don’t take it personal if people don’t find your pets as friendly as you find them. Put your pals in a safe place for the brief time your guests are there. Any folks with allergies will love you for it!
If possible, allow the phone to be picked by the answering machine – or turn the ringer off. This will keep the group interaction from being interrupted and you won’t be bothered by those annoying telemarketers!
You may find it helpful to give your first time guest some parking directions. If you have preferences as to where folks park, be sure to let them know.
As often as possible children should be incorporated in what the community is doing. With the right rhythm you should be able to include kids in a lot of the life of the community. Reference the appendix for some ideas on alternative rhythms for groups with children. In the event that you do use childcare or have members of your groups watch kids during a gathering, be sure and use common sense. No less then two adults should watch kids regardless of how few kids are being watched. Have parents take their own children to the bathroom or change diapers. Be wise and adhere to the children’s ministry policy of Calvary Chapel. Each group will need to handle its own childcare needs. MAKE SURE if your group chooses to arrange for childcare at the meeting, that the host approves of that plan and there is an appropriate place there for the kids to experience the benefit of a Community Group as well.
The Host need not think that he or she should provide refreshments or meals for the group each week. A good idea would be to have the members of the group pick a week to bring snacks. Keep it simple so that the bringing of refreshments doesn’t become a contest to out-do each other. You may want to plan a covered dish meal as part of your fellowship time.