When you think about rhythms of time, consider the following:
- Do you have young families (you may not want to schedule regular items to go past 9pm on a school night)
- Does this gathering need to be 3 hours, or can it be 1.5 hours? (consider shorter times)
- Can this gathering (or others) happen more frequently?
- How do Sunday rhythms benefit our community?
- Can our Via Community attend a service together?
- Can we all own a service and greet and/or get to know people in the Main Auditorium 20 minutes prior to service starting?
- In what ways could we serve on our campus together as a community?
Many people think that the problem in being able to make a Via Community really work is time. People don't have enough time to carve out a Via Community in their life. The problem has never been nor ever will be time. People will make time for what is life-giving. Make sure your Via Community doesn't suck the life out of people. When you gather, make sure that those in your community know that you care for them and aren't just trying to get through a night. Be honest and transparent and help to cultivate authentic conversations regarding someone's journey in faith. People will always make time for what is life-giving.
When you think about rhythms related to the scene (or environment), consider the following:
- Is this place create a bridge or barrier to the Gospel? (Are we only inviting people over to a house? Do we have options for more low-energy barrier locations?)
- How can we mix up the location of our gatherings so that there are multiple entry points to community?
- How does the scene affect the feel of our gathering?
There is a spectrum of how a leader will engage their community related to substance. On one end of the spectrum, you have those who can only talk about very serious things all the time and constantly drag the conversation into the deep depths of theology and philosophy. On the other, you have those who can trivialize almost everything in life to the point where a serious conversation can rarely be had. As a Via Community leader, know your tendencies here and monitor not only your rhythms of bringing substance to a group, but also the rhythms of others in your community. You will have to steer back the overly serious guy and push forward the super chill girl in certain settings.
Hearing the Beat
In your neighborhood, become an expert in knowing the rhythms of your community and neighborhood. Get your hands on anything that can point your attention to ways that you neighborhoods gather together, party, etc. Ultimately, make it a goal to know as much about your neighborhood as possible.