Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Tuesday Tomes - Friendship is Learned Behavior

Next Sunday, September 14, I'll be starting a new Sunday morning teaching series at Valley Christian Church. The series, You Belong Here, is aimed at giving people dozens of helpful and meaningful ways to connect with others in their church.

Though it's often assumed that making friends is something that comes naturally to people, my pastoral experience has shown me just how surprisingly difficult it is for many people––maybe even most––to make, keep, enjoy, and deepen friendships.  I've come to realize that being a good friend is a learned behavior.

If a church is going to experience true community, then the church must do all it can to cultivate and teach friendship skills. Learning to connect with others, to appreciate different kinds of friendship, and to guard and nurture relationships is a must for Christian maturity. So we're going to spend nine weeks talking about it and taking intentional steps.  Get complete sermon series info HERE.

Two books I'm recommending to people as companion resources for my new series are: Everybody's Normal by John Ortberg, and To Be a Friend by Jerry and Mary White. We'll have a few copies available at the church resource center, and we may have some reading groups.


Everybody's Normal
by John Ortberg

From the Publisher's Description...
...How do flawed, abnormal people such as ourselves master the forces that can drive us apart and come together in the life-changing relationships God designed us for?

In Everybody’s Normal Till You Get to Know Them, John Ortberg zooms in on the things that make community tick. You’ll get a thought-provoking look at God’s heart, at others, and at yourself. Even better, you’ll gain wisdom and tools for drawing closer to others in powerful, impactful ways. With humor, insight, and a gift for storytelling, Ortberg shows how community pays tremendous dividends in happiness, health, support, and growth. It’s where all of us weird, unwieldy people encounter God’s love in tangible ways and discover the transforming power of being loved, accepted, and valued just the way we are.


To Be a Friend
by Jerry and Mary White

From the Publisher's Description...
Friendship is not a rational process. While reasoning and discerning play a part in our choices of friends, feelings and emotions are strong elements as well. Much of the conscious development of our circle of friends rests on an understanding of the elements and foundations of friendship. There is no magic formula. Friendship choices rest on principles and concepts. Friendships take effort. They hold a bit of mystery. They can’t be manufactured. But they are priceless. Walk with Jerry and Mary White in To Be a Friend as they probe and discover together the great adventure of being and having friends.

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