Small groups function as the delivery system for all spiritual formation.  These groups are structured in such a way that the members become active participants in developing their spirituality and helping others in the group to do so as well.  Each group has designated members who are championing one of the 5 purposes for small groups: Worship, Fellowship, Discipleship, Ministry, and Outreach.  A healthy small group is a community of people who challenge each other to become all that God destined them to become!  Small Groups are also the primary context in which leaders are identified and developed.

5 major purposes of a small group

Worship—this can be singing within the group or any other form of praise, prayer, Scripture reading, service, and other such things.  Worship can be expressed in many ways, so feel free to think outside the box.  Worship is one of those rare words in which its etymological meaning is also its actual meaning.  Worship literally means worth-ship.  To seek to express the worthiness of God in any and all ways is worship!  Creativity and variety are good and honoring to God as well as edifying to members.

Fellowship—this often happens in the context of hospitality and food! The planning of different celebrations (Birthdays, Holidays, etc.) along with all other such social events can fall under this category.  Ice breakers, games, and other such group building exercises are also included here.  The creation of a safe and warm atmosphere to promote the intentional sharing of each other’s lives in meaningful ways is the focus. 

Discipleship—Group discipleship is the most common form found in Scripture (1 Cor 12, Rom 12, Eph 4).  This involves encouragement towards spiritual maturity, and would play out in the establishing of accountability relationships, the practice of spiritual disciplines, and personal application and follow through for things that are being learned.  Groups could go to conferences together, do studies together, discuss the past week’s sermon together, etc.  (Curricular goal: one Biblical book, topical study, and spirituality study annually)

Ministry—it is a priority to discover each group member’s SHAPE for ministry!  The group should be looking to find opportunities for each member to use their gifts in service to the local church body.  Opportunities should also be pursued within the small group as needs arise or as a member(s) experience a crisis.  Members should each be looking for opportunities to serve personally, and be challenging other members to serve when it seems it may be a good fit for their SHAPE for ministry.  Groups should look for opportunities to do service projects together as well, which is one of the strongest bonding activities that a group could do! 

S—Spiritual gifts. What are you gifted to do?

H—Heart. What passions to you have?

A—Abilities. What do you naturally do better than others?

P—Personality. How has God wired you to navigate life?

E—Experiences. Where have you been and what have you learned?

 

Evangelism—Groups should be planning and implementing outreach personally, locally, and globally!  Each of these three areas has a different target group.

1.  Personally—Group members need to be asking: Who is next? Who are we praying for opportunities to witness to? Who are we seeking to bring into our group? Each member should develop and share their testimony with the group.  Once they are comfortable sharing their story with each other, they are encouraged to share it with others.  The group members should also become comfortable and capable to share the gospel.  The group might plan a cookout that non-believers are invited to (neighbors, co-workers, friends, and family) in order that they can see Christians in a regular social environment.

2.  Locally—The group should look at their community and determine where the most urgent needs are.  Get a list of all opportunities and volunteer organizations in your community and serve in the venues God would lead you to serve within both individually (school board, coaching, PTA, city council, boys and girls clubs, after school programs, etc.) and as a group (homeless shelters, prison ministry, habitat for humanity, pregnancy center, assisted living, etc.). 

3.  Globally—The group should seek to be a part of a global mission trip.  This does not mean that every person has to go; not everyone is in a stage of life to be able to go on global trips.  But every team should be able to mobilize a home team (those who stay and pray) and an away team (those who go on the trip).

Sign-up

To sign up for a small group contact Jason Martin at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Phone: (806) 797-4136
6602 Indiana Avenue
Lubbock, Texas 79413