As we wrap up the small groups for the year we are already thinking about next year. If you’re like me, you are thinking about curriculum.
What do we do?
Do we buy it? If so, what one?
Do we write it? Do we have enough time or man power to do so?
If so, what do we put into it?
Is it going to be good?
As we begin the process of putting together small group curriculum and think about discipleship, I think about 3 different questions when it comes to helping put together what we feel is the best curriculum for our students to grow stronger in Jesus:
- Who is this for? When it comes to small groups, who is the curriculum for? Is it for students who are just checking things out? Is it for students who are your core students? Is it for your die-hards? When we begin to think about the type of stuff we are putting out, we will better understand the types of students you are attracting. Everything we do is for these types of groups and the age old question is: How do we get curriculum to make sure all are covered? What we can do is go before god in prayer, and have Him help guide to the bought or self-made curriculum you feel is best for your ministry. The trick is asking, who do you really want to reach?
- What makes a disciple? Another question in which could have a million answers. What you consider the characteristics of a disciple usually determines the types of disciples you are going to make. Spend some time talking with your volunteer team and ask them what they feel makes a disciple of Jesus, then pick the top 3-5 ones and begin to develop a curriculum track towards those goals.
- What is the process? I wish there was a magic potion we can drink and BOOOM! Instant disciple. If anyone knows, we know the discipleship process is exactly that… a process. Think baby steps. One of the great things about small groups, it’s already a baby step from the large group. Students began the process of joining a smaller group. Another great thing about groups are they last all year long, for four years. When you have them in your ministry, what are the benchmarks you would want them to hit as they go through this process? List them out, make sure your curriculum guides your students towards those goals.
Whether you like to buy curriculum or make your own, it’s a process. There is no better way or the best way. Each way is up to the pastor who hopefully is on their knees before God asking for direction on what way the group should go. Whatever it is you do, try to keep these questions in mind and hopefully it can help guide you to the perfect curriculum for your group next year.