In Matthew 18:20, Jesus made a promise: “For where two or three are gathered in My name, I am there in the midst of them” (NKJV). When you take that promise to hear, trusting your group leaders with your people becomes much easier. But what does that trust look like in action? It starts with simple things. Let go of some of the decisions regarding when and where your small groups meet and what they study. Instead of mandating these details from the top, trust your leaders to establish the groups they want to establish, within an approved framework.
For example, say you have a group leader who wants to lead a men’s group that will study the book of James and play basketball together on Tuesdays at 7:00 a.m. From your perspective, you may be able to come up with a list of reasons why that group won’t work. But the reality is that if the group leader is interested in leading an early-morning, James-studying basketball group, there may be fifteen other men in the church who would connect with that concept and jump on board. And these may be men who would be hesitant to join a more traditional group. Plus that’s likely a type of group you would never have thought to offer if you forced all small group possibilities to be filtered through the hands of paid staff. You and I can pretend that we know best all the time, or we can learn to trust the leadership—and the creative ideas—of our lay leaders.
– Nelson Searcy and Kerrick Thomas, with Jennifer Dykes Henson
The above excerpt is from p.104-105 of Activate: An Entirely New Approach to Small Groups.
Drawing from the startling success of small groups at The Journey Church, Nelson Searcy and Kerrick Thomas debunk the myths, set the record straight, and show how church leaders can implement a healthy small group ministry that gets the maximum number of people involved and solves many of the important problems facing churches of all sizes. These practical strategies will produce life-changing results.
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