Gauging the Success of Small Groups

  “Let your group leaders know what success looks like. Make sure they don’t feel any pressure to create deep relationships between group members. Don’t let them think that if everyone isn’t crying together, sharing intimate details of their lives, or getting together outside of group meetings, they have failed. They haven’t. Teach your leaders that their small group is … Read More

Nelson SearcySmall Groups

Successful Groups Have Specific Dates

  “Have specific beginning and end dates for your small groups. At The Journey, our groups last ten to twelve weeks. This gives people the freedom and flexibility to make a commitment they can stick with. Then, if a few people connect and become good friends, they can choose to be in a group together again the next semester. Inevitably, … Read More

Nelson SearcySmall Groups

Think Friends, Not Intimacy

  “The time has come to address the elephant in the room – to give a voice to the truth we’ve all been avoiding: Small groups are not the best place for intimate relationships to form. Instead, they are a place to form new, basic friendships. This doesn’t lower the bar for groups in any way. When it comes to … Read More

Nelson SearcySmall Groups

Think Big for Small Groups

  “Groups of seven or fewer people have a significantly higher failure rate, produce less fruit, and cause everyone involved more frustration and anxiety than larger groups. The solution is simple: encourage bigger groups. Allow up to twenty people to sign up for each of your groups. By allowing this many people to sign up, your projected number of actual … Read More

Nelson SearcySmall Groups

Larger Small Groups are More Effective

  “Sometimes small groups can be too small. Groups with seven members or fewer are difficult to lead and more likely to fail, while groups of twelve to fifteen  are more effective at fostering healthy relationships and encouraging spiritual growth. Many leaders mistakenly think that larger groups lose their intimacy, make meaningful relationships harder to cultivate, and frustrate members who … Read More

Nelson SearcySmall Groups

The Right Question to Ask if You Want to Grow Your Small Groups

  “When you set up a small group system with your committed churchgoers in mind, you inevitably create a process that makes it easy for members and regular attenders to get signed up or signed up again. And yes, this is a problem. When something seems like second nature to your regulars, there’s a good chance that people who are … Read More

Nelson SearcySmall Groups

100% Adult Participation in Small Groups is Possible!

Thank you to Bookshout for their recent 5-star review of the revised and expanded Activate: An Entirely New Approach to Small Groups. Kerrick Thomas and I wrote this book together with the goal of helping churches build a small groups system that motivates 100% adult participation. We’ve been using these principles here in NYC for the last 16 years and regularly see … Read More

Nelson SearcySmall Groups

John Wesley, Small Groups, and Becoming Students of the Word

The following post is from my good friend and John Wesley authority, Dr Bob Whitesel. I had the tremendous privilege of traveling with him on a UK tour to study the “Footsteps of John Wesley.” This immersion was so powerful that I invited Dr. Whitesel to speak for a half day on the church growth principles of John Wesley (we … Read More

Nelson SearcyChurch Growth, Church Systems, Evangelism, Small Groups

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New Year’s Half Off Sale – Ends Friday!

As we wrap up this year today, I want you to kick-start 2015 with maximum energy and impact! My first resolution is to help you do exactly that by equipping you with the resources you need – so I’m giving you dozens of my most powerful training resources for up to 50% off in the BIG NEW YEAR’S HALF OFF SALE! There are over … Read More

Nelson SearcyAssimilation, Church Growth, Church Systems, Evangelism, Launch, Leadership, Ministry, Preaching, Small Groups, Stewardship, Strategy, Worship Planning

Maximize Summer By Being Creative With Small Groups (Part 2)

Summer small groups are also an ideal way to raise up new group leaders, for two reasons. Number one, many of your regular leaders will want to take the summer off. In fact, we encourage a summer break. You don’t want leaders to get burned out. And through their break, you open up the opportunity for people who have never led before to step in. … Read More

Nelson SearcyEvangelism, Small Groups, Uncategorized

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