the Unifying Power of Fun


A few years ago I was on youth staff at Rolling Hills Community Church. During those years I learned big lessons that have shaped both who I am and how I do ministry today. Rolling Hills had 8 full-time staff in the youth department with very focused area’s of specialization. Mark Began (the boss, a.k.a. ‘The big shooter-downer’:-) had quite a challenge bring unity to his staff. I remember it was a season of particular tension, we didn’t seem to be getting along well, and he took us all to play Frisbee golf at a local park. We spent the afternoon chucking Frisbee’s and just playing. It was fun.

The next staff meeting, people walked in with smiles seeing each other, I even think there was some hugs and some, “it’s great to see you’s.” It was a learning moment in my life that made it into my first written draft of my philosophy of ministry.

“Never underestimate the power of play.”

That day I saw tensions on church staff dissolve. I saw people giving a bit more grace to one another. I saw increased love. That day I learned that love and grace are cultivated in play. This is the driving reason for game nights at church. This is the driving reason for video game nights with church people. And deep down, I am thinking the genuine unity and love for one another that is continuing to grow at Re:Hope could be the natural symptom of things many might consider to be a waste of time.

Last night, our video game night at Microplay Gaming Centre was electric. There was a great group of people from church and so many people who have never gone to church in their lives having a great time. It sounds so stupid, so pointless. Yet, it was blazingly obvious that camaraderie was being build, friendships were growing and the unifying power of fun was at work.

BTW- “I killed Dan.”

3 Comments on “the Unifying Power of Fun”

Dan, February 2nd, 2007 at 10:32 pm

BF2 quote - “You’re the best squad I’ve ever laid eyes on!”

Stephen, February 3rd, 2007 at 5:48 pm

As a staff team we haven’t done much fun stuff together. Let’s do something.

Jonesy, February 3rd, 2007 at 6:56 pm

Well bro, Dan just admitted it…

Our squad is the best squad he’s laid eyes on.

Oh… and p.s.


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