I’m part of a huge Facebook group where people who work at different sized churches all communicate best practices and ideas. I recently saw someone in the group suggest we break the group into multiple groups, based on the size of church. They felt they weren’t learning from the folks who worked at larger churches. I see it like this: They found themselves in the deep end of the pool and wanted to go back to comfortable depths. Now, there’s value in that, but I also think that’s not where you should stay.
Here are three depths I think everyone should continually experience in their life.
1. The comfortable depth.
This the enjoyable depth in life. You have some freedom for discovery, but you also know nothing too bad will happen. You’re surrounded by other people with similar skills as you, consequently, the conversations are all about things you appreciate. There’s a benefit to comfortable depths. But if that’s the only place you live, that’s unhealthy.
2. The shallow depth.
I believe there’s benefit for those who return to the shallow depths. Thinking of the FB group, these would be the folks from large churches, communicating with the ones from small churches. First of all, it helps you regain perspective and appreciation for how far you’ve come. But it also gives you an opportunity to invest in those who aren’t as far along as you. You actually learn a ton as you teach others.
3. The deep end.
Finally, though, I think people need to jump into the deep end from time to time. It’s those places that are scary, that feel beyond our ability. This is where you realize how far you have yet to go, but also what’s possible. You see there’s so much more than what you currently experience. It gives you something to aim toward. And it heightens your skill, so when you return to the comfortable depths, you realize you can actually go deeper this time.
We should continually grow as life-swimmers. But that doesn’t mean we leave people behind. Let’s reach for new depths and then reach back to bring others along with us.