This week’s blog is from a couple who started a Small Group via a Connections class. Their journey is much like many leaders as they continue to watch for God’s direction as they lead a group.
I have no idea how you evaluate your success as a leader. For us, it has been a constant evaluation. Our small group was big, then small, then big then small, see a pattern? When I was asked to write this blog I pondered these questions:
1. You can’t help but wonder is there some activities that I can do to keep members coming? We did the picnic at the lake… But group members moved and some found other groups they liked to try out or went back to their previous small group.
2. So, then we thought, are we not engaging the small group enough, with the right studies? We asked for their input on study choices and talked to other group leaders.
3. Then we wondered if we had not mastered the scriptures enough to engage our members?
Well it all began at home for us, our children began seeking God and had many questions, a family member of another belief began placing her practices and beliefs on my children, this of course concerned me. I did not want my children to be as lost and alone as we were years ago. My husband began seeking answers in the bible and became over time totally immersed in the word, which was a beautiful transformation from my view. It took me a little while to come around and surrender my mind, body and soul to Jesus.
When we were all on board we began a Bible study at home, my husband, myself and our 3 children. I guess you could say this was our first small group. The scripture in 1 Corinthians chapter 12 reviled to us that we needed to share our testimony and surround ourselves with other Christ followers so we began searching for a church. Instead of walking into several churches we searched online and boy was that scary. When we came to Lifepoint it was at first very overwhelming for us all, and that was just walking through the doors. Once we got the kids situated and we found our seats and began to listen to the Pastor it was amazing how we discovered that there really are more believers out there!
We walked the halls of the church for a few weeks, dropping our kids off in their departments and attending worship. Then we meet a kind man with a kind face and a gentle spirit. He led us to Connections (an on-campus class designed to help new comers get connected with LifePoint and other attenders for the purpose of forming small groups). We stayed in Connections for about 6 months and in that time we developed relationships with people with whom we just clicked with. We launched our new small group with a handful of Christ followers that were eager to learn more about our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ! Our group has met every Sunday since. I hear many groups that use books and videos for their studies, which is great. However, we tend to stay focused on one book, the Bible, as our guide and resource.
Our group grew closer together, then one couple left, then another…then new couples came aboard. This just goes to show that whatever walk in life you are in there’s always a place you can come in and continue your journey as a Christ follower. As disciples of Christ, we continue to love on those that walk in and take their next step towards a Christ Centered Life. We will always welcome the newcomers and check up on those moving on. Staying connected on your Christ centered journey is vital. Our group has learned to help each other on this journey, through the tough times as well as good times.
The questions of evaluation will always be there, but that is not a bad thing. Continually striving to be the best leader, taking advantage of training, and seeking God’s direction as a leader has helped us answer these three questions. I pray this story will help you on your journey as a leader.