Our phones can be one of the best ways to connect with the people that we care about. Below are four types of text messages that you could send to others in your group to build your relationships outside of the regular gathering time:
1. “How’d It Go?”
Some of my favorite text messages to receive are “How’d it go?” texts from others in my Small Group. They let me know that a friend in my group has been thinking and praying about an event that I shared with them—or asked them to pray about. And they want to check in with me to know how the event went so that they can rejoice with me or react with me (Romans 12:15). Either way, they are in it with me, and they want to pray. I want to do the same for them.
2. “Come On Over!”
Different seasons of life might lend themselves to a bit more or less spontaneity. But whether planned or impromptu, a “Come on over!” text message lets other group members know that you’d love to have them over.
It could be asking them to join you for a simple last-minute chili dinner at your house, or it could be inviting them to go see a movie with you, or it could be sending them your plan for an upcoming get-together. This kind of text message lets them know that you want to spend time with them in life, not just during group gatherings.
3. “Check This Out”
We need encouragement during the week (1 Thessalonians 5:11). And one of the best ways to do this can be sharing with others things that are helping you grow. You could text a verse that you read in your devotion time that morning, a video that was encouraging (or made you smile), or a link to a blog article or sermon where you harvested some spiritual food. Often others will receive these jolts of encouragement at just the moment when it is needed.
4. “I Need Help”
It may seem counterintuitive, but sometimes sharing your needs is the best thing you could do. By sharing a need, you become more transparent, and others in the group can step into your life to help: whether by praying or by physically assisting. And as we help one another, inevitably our relationships together grow.
Of course, we should be careful not to use texts as an opportunity to sinfully vent about our circumstances, hold people hostage to helping us in the way that we want, or overburden others—because we know that our circumstances are our responsibility under God (2 Corinthians 5:10). But sharing our various needs creates opportunities for us to rally alongside one another as we do life together.