The Bible League of Kenya developed a partnership with Coffee Break to share the materials and method in order to encourage small group Bible discovery. Most often, ‘Bible Study’ in Africa means teaching. People learn about the Bible through teaching in sermons, Sunday School and small groups.
If you were going to plant a garden, what would you do? I have asked this question many times at small group discipleship training. The first answers usually are: dig, plant, water. What else: weed, fertilize, pick. What else? Buy seeds. What kind of seeds will you buy? Oh, we have to decide what we are going to grow!
Growing a discipleship ministry is an ongoing process, much like growing a garden. Good gardeners are aware that they need to cultivate particular practices in order to develop a healthy, vibrant garden. If they faithfully plant, water, fertilize, etc., they will yield a good crop. Maybe.
Just before Jesus’ death he prayed, “that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me.” (John 17:21) What did Jesus mean by oneness? What is our picture of Christian oneness?
I'm curious to know if your small group (or someone's you know about) has used the Radical Small Group Study that goes along with Platt's Radical and Radical Together books?
On April 15-17, thousands from the CRC will be gathering to pray for our denomination at the 2013 Prayer Summit and in homes and churches across North America and around the world. Your small group can participate in this growing movement by hosting a “Watch and Pray” event in the comfort of your home or join by using the daily Prayer Guide.
To follow Jesus and become a fisher of men, we need to do what Jesus did. He spent time with those who were lost and needed a Savior. We cannot catch any fish by casting our fishing poles on the ground and we cannot win the lost from our comfortable church pew.
Writing the final report for the Sustaining Congregational Excellence Grant which supported the Discipleship Triads for our church gave me the opportunity to reflect on the effectiveness of this project and celebrate how God has worked in and through them in our setting.
My firm belief, pastoral experience, and observation is that “believers do not declare the gospel if they do not delight in God.” Do you delight in Jesus Christ? Does your small group encourage delight in Jesus and declaration of the gospel?
Allow me to share some insights I’ve learned as I’ve coached churches through intentional faith development that will help you work a plan that will actually bear fruit by producing better disciples across your congregation.
We are still in the early stages of this small group experiment, but so far the results have been great. As pastors, we feel the congregation is more involved and interacting with the weekend messages. The format means that we don’t have to create something new — it flows out of what we are already doing.
With all the choices of small group options, why choose sermon based small groups? Two selling points are: 1) it allows people at a variety of spiritual stages to dig deeper than a thirty minute message, and 2) it takes little preparation for either the facilitator or the group member.
Imagine small group leaders and teams standing as scarecrows over our groups and ministries to guard against Satan’s assaults. Farmers place scarecrows in gardens because the farmer expects birds to go after his seeds. It is naïve of us to not be ready for Satan’s attempts to wreak havoc in our Christian communities.