WE ARE A SAFE PLACE
Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work. Eph 4:16
Safety is inextricably linked to relationship. Its fundamental to community and its integral to us as a church both as an organisation but also individually.
This core value from The Code is extremely important in outworking all the other values in the code and trying to bring this “Code culture” into Revive.
The verse for this Value is Ephesians 4:15 & 16 Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.
Our bible verse actually does not mention the word safe or safety in it once but the reason we felt God put this verse on our hearts is that a safe place nurtures, it supports, it protects, it builds people up in love and fosters growth.
Safety is found where people are empowered to grow, rather than viewed as project to fix, built up in love, rather than torn down, and supported by others, and able to speak the truth in love.
How does that happen well it happens by the whole body fitting together – each doing its own part; helping others grow. Its ensuring that those we are in community with are all growing together. You could think of it as a Greenhouse a place that fosters warmth and protection to allow growth – it’s a safe place that we can grow together. To empower others as we look beyond ourselves and see them grow and flourish. A place or an environment that people feel safe to share; safe to be vulnerable, safe to be supported and support others; safe to take a risk, safe to fail, safe speak up
It’s very important to note that this value doesn’t say IT is a safe place. It says WE are a safe place, because safety can only be built through relationship and community. We are big believers that authentic community with a group of people that are a safe place is THE best place to be supported practically in life but also to grow spiritually; it’s in that place that unity is fostered, and diversity championed. Its in that place that you can Get Free; that you will start to become more mature in your faith. It’s also the best place to make some of the best friends you will probably make in your life.
Safety is extremely important – We want to flood Revive Church with safety, safety cues – in every environment; every interaction to help people feel comfortable to share; to have conversations that matter but also to protect the innocent and vulnerable and fight for injustice.
We as the people that make up Revive Church are going to be a safe place, a sanctuary for the lost, the vulnerable and the hurting. The only reason we are that is because Jesus; the head of the church has fit us together.
So helping people find Jesus is of paramount importance but there are also other things that we can do individually and corporately to be a safe place. So let’s talk about 3 things.
<strong>SAFEGUARDING</strong> – Every single person has a responsibility for the safeguarding of people in our care as a church and charitable organisation. It’s the right thing to do and it’s also the lawful thing to do. We are all here to ensure everyone is safe and the vulnerable are looked out for.
Proverbs 31: 8-9.
Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves,
for the rights of all who are destitute.
Speak up and judge fairly;
defend the rights of the poor and needy.
We’ve said it already but we just want to reinforce it – this requires everyone in the church to play their part and report any concerns they may have. This is about spotting genuine concerns about individuals (children and vulnerable adults) who are not in a position to make decisions for themselves and ensure that we play our part in protecting the safety of others; physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually.
Whilst most church safeguarding stops at protection level, here in Revive – We are warriors and that means we aren’t settling for protection. Ephesians 5:11 has clear instruction to
“Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of the darkness, but rather expose them.”
If we come across something, something that is potentially harmful be-it physical or spiritual it will be spotted quickly and will be removed permanently. There is no wriggle room at Revive. We have clear, specific, fair and safe processes in place and we not tolerate any forms of abuse.
This core value expects, of us all, ` to be ensuring the safety of others in our care.
<strong>CONVERSATIONS</strong>- The way we converse and communicate actually is the vehicle for the creation of safety. One sentence can make all the difference between someone feeling safe and unsafe in a situation. Is that really possible and the answer is absolutely Yes.
Proverbs 12:18 teaches, “The words of the reckless pierce like swords, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.”
Being wise is both something we can ask God for help with but also learning some conversational tools that will build safety into the way you talk and it can truly transform your relationships.
This is a big subject and something we are going to be training out at different levels, to help everyone to grab hold of some of these principles as we move forward.
Often that looks like starting with ourselves – what are we really trying to achieve from conversation what is our heart – we need to remind ourselves that we set our mind on things above; onto God and His Kingdom. If our motives are Christ centred, then our conversation is immediately different to being self-centred. Checking ourselves, our motives and our emotions enables to then focus on not only what we say but also how we say it.
There are proven studies on people who build safety well in conversation that we can learn from. The book based on these studies is called Crucial Conversations and we encourage you all to read it.
<strong>COMMUNITY</strong> – safeguarding and a conversation culture building on safety fosters true, authentic community where we can truly be the church of Jesus Christ – growing together; sharing together, laughing & crying; being there in the ups and downs because:
Eph 4 15 & 16 Speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.
We want to build an atmosphere and environment where you are safe to be vulnerable and feel heard. In Revive we call this our Kitchen Table – A place were family can be family.
Community is at the very core of God’s plan for His people – He consistently talks about His people – not His persons….and so it makes sense for these close knit communities to be the place where you can be safe to be the real you its from that place and with that common goal that we can grow closer to Jesus.