Other Updates:

Reflections on Leading a GRIP Team Process

Introducing Discerning Direction Together

5 Reasons to Attend Set in Motion

Dissecting the Dotted Diamond

Resilience in Ministry

The Allure of Structure

Body Life Value: Caring


Individual Value: Acceptance

Shared Value: Shared Brokenness

Team Skills: Practicing Presence, Nurturing Safe Spaces, Supporting each other in tangible ways

Biblical References: Acts 4:32; Galatians 6:10; Ephesians 4:2; Ephesians 4:32-5:2; Philippians 4:10; Colossians 3:12-14


Body Life Result: Belonging


In a caring community …

… we find acceptance …

Teams can be complicated.

We all bring baggage with us from previous relationships and experiences. As such, caring for and about team members can be hard. And let’s just be honest, sometimes certain people can be harder for us to love than others. We all show up with our own insecurities, hang-ups, and personality flaws. But God calls us to love one another as Christ loves us (John 13:34; 15:12) — despite of ourselves and despite the things that can make us hard to love.

Developing a caring community means learning to accept each other as we are, including all the diversity of thought, experience, personality and backgrounds that we have and bring to the team.

Accepting each other as we are, however, doesn’t mean leaving each other where we are at. Although we are not called to ‘fix’ one another, caring teams desire that each member experience the loving and healing presence of our Savior more deeply. Understanding that we are all on a journey together towards more deeply reflecting the character and image of Jesus, allows us to more easily practice caring acceptance for one another in tangible ways.

Who do you struggle to accept as they are? What can you do to see them as God sees them?

… we nurture safe spaces …

Recognizing that all of us fall short of the glory of God, allows us to enter into a space of shared brokenness where we can take on a posture of supporting one another. As the saying goes, life happens. We don’t leave our hurts, worries, and concerns outside the door of our workspaces. Our professional selves are not separate from our personal selves. There is probably no better way to enter into these spaces of shared brokenness than by practicing presence with one another. Developing genuine caring relationships with others requires intentionality. It requires time spent together building relationships of trust. It requires courage and risk taking. Giving of ourselves in this way may make us feel vulnerable at first, but the beauty that will emerge as we participate in caring for one another is worth the growing pains. Teams who practice a caring presence with one another will find themselves moving towards reflecting more deeply the caring community of the Trinity.

An integral piece to nurturing safe spaces is to be reverent with one another. As mentioned earlier, taking the risk to share our needs or struggles with one another can leave us feeling vulnerable. It is important to recognize the preciousness of the gift we are being offered and receive it with grace, humility and gentleness. Picture for example Jesus’ reaction to the fallen woman who comes to anoint him with perfume while he is in the home of a Pharisee (Luke 7:36-50). Imagine Jesus’ gentle gaze as he takes in her possibly tentative approach. Hear his words as he defends the gift she is giving him. Jesus models what it means to create a safe space within the inhospitable nature of society.

How are you cultivating safe spaces in which team members can be vulnerable with one another?

… we support each other in tangible ways

James, the brother of Jesus, stresses the importance of expressing our faith in tangible ways (James 2:14-26). If the posture of a caring community is caring about each other, then the practice of a caring community is caring for one another. Teams that are nurturing safe spaces of shared brokenness, and who are actively practicing presence together, will be able to offer tangible ways to support each other. What that looks like could be very different depending on the team member or the situation.  Through Christ’s people, in partnership with the Spirit, the Father calls each of us to express His love, compassion and care as grace-gifts to one another. Teams who have developed into– and live out of– the value of caring, are teams that are better able to weather the challenges of work, ministry, and life together.

Are you asking and listening to the needs of your team? How can you support them in their life journey?

We All Have Responsibility for Developing a Caring Culture

So why is developing a caring community so important for team effectiveness? In the Harvard Business Review article entitled, Proof that Positive Work Cultures are More Productive, authors Emma Seppala and Kim Cameron articulate that teams who care for one another and feel cared for by one another experience better mental and physical health benefits, deeper levels of engagement (including increased performance and productivity), and increased loyalty to the organization.

Not surprisingly those who have the most influence over the culture of the team are the team leaders. Seppala and Cameron write, “When you know a leader is committed to operating from a set of values based on interpersonal kindness, he or she sets the tone for the entire organization.” Although team leaders play key roles in developing culture, it would be unfair of us to lay the sole responsibility for developing culture at the feet of leaders. And, beyond the leader of the team, we believe that leadership is a shared function of each team member playing their part, fulfilling their God-designed role.  So, how are you modeling the value of caring?  Each member of the team needs to be committed to moving from a culture of ‘I to We’. Gregory Stebbins in his Forbes Magazine article Transcendent Leaders: Cocreating a Caring Culture expresses the importance of having all members, despite their level within the team or organization, engaged in the formation of team culture. Stebbins iterates, “Culture isn’t just a component of the company — it’s the heartbeat of the company. Cocreating a caring culture is best done by everyone within that culture. Accumulated wisdom within provides guidance to ensure that beliefs, values and attitudes link together and support the company’s purpose.”


Take some time to read the three statements below with your team. How do these resonate with you and others? Do these statements reflect the culture of your team?

  1. I consistently pursue team members to understand them.
  2. Team members provide space to share their personal needs, hurts, and concerns openly, and feel cared for.
  3. We are effective as a team because we support each other and empower each other in tangible ways.

If these statements aren’t true for each of your team members, then you may need to ask yourself why? What needs attention on your team that will help the team move more deeply towards valuing the posture of caring and the practice of being a caring community?

Hear more about Caring on the GB Coaches Cafe YouTube channel at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=leylq1KrsH8
or listen on your favorite podcast provider: https://www.buzzsprout.com/1885604/share

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