Culture is top priority!
Blog from Sarah Brown (Group leader at TSM)
Have you ever stopped to consider what the word culture means?
The dictionary explains it as: the ideas, customs, and social behaviour of a particular people or society.
So, when you are with a group pf people you are creating a culture, whether you realise it or not.
At TSM culture is a top priority and there is an intentionality about creating just the right one.
We want people to feel and taste the culture and we want it to be the most encouraging place you could wish to be. When you walk into it you can feel it, it’s so palpable (even visitors can feel it). We want it to be so much a part of who you are that it gets into your very DNA and this will then make it transferrable, so you get to take it away with you at the end of the year. Suddenly, the bar has been raised on your expectations for culture.
Imagine yourself going to the best party… you think that nothing could top this but then, at the end, you walk away with a goodie bag that blows your mind! No surely this can’t all be for me, it’s scandalous that they are giving this away so freely, do they even know how much they have put in my bag, they never mentioned this on the invite, what a beautiful surprise, I just can’t wait to tell everybody about it.
Well that is what the culture of TSM feels like.
So, let me unpack that a bit for you.
The core values for culture are: honour, generosity, acceptance, authenticity, and courage. All of them in and of themselves are fabulous but together they create something special. Now these core values are not just something we talk about (a lot) but, we practice what we preach!
Honour is the top of that list and underpins everything that happens, it’s the literal backbone of TSM. This is probably the one that people can see so evidently, and as we honour each other we can freely receive the gift they have to share. We learn to honour ourselves because He made us (a real biggie).
Acceptance is huge too, as students learn that this TSM is a safe place, a place to be truly and fully known. In being truly known, which can make you incredibly vulnerable, you are met with utter acceptance and no judgement, which brings people into freedom, some for the first time in their lives. We learn that our stories, instead of carrying shame and embarrassment carry treasure. We believe the best in everyone and learn how to pull out the gold people carry within, which is counter culture to a world where people just see the dirt and talk about that.
Generosity is about learning to change our thinking from, what I can get out of this, to, what can I give?
Finally, courage, that is modelled by the leaders who week on week step through fear to share, with their masks off. It’s a year where together we choose to say yes to God and then celebrate the steps of obedience, big and small.
If this has whet your appetite for more, come and visit us.