We are in the very begginning staging of launching a smalll group program. The grand scheme will not come out until fall next year, but the process has bugun. As I have been thinking about groups, here is what people do not really tell you about groups:
- They are messy. Everyone tends to think that a person’s spiritual growth is a straight line up. In reality, it’s finger painting. They are messy. Small groups are messy because people are messy. Small groups are difficult because people are difficult. God tends to show up and work best in the messy parts of life. Be prepared for it.
- Not every will be your biggest fan. When we put together groups for the year, there are some decisions that needed to be made that not everyone will like or agree with. They are not easy decisions, but they have to happen. Trust me, parents will let you know when they do not agree with your decision. I had a few times this year where I stood there and had people tell me they were not their biggest fan in their own…special…way.
- If you do nothing, nothing will happen. For me, small groups launch is a crazy time. There is months of prepping coming up to it, a month of insanity, then for the rest of the year is pretty relaxed as far as running groups goes. Something I have noticed is that it can be really easy to take advantage of this time. If I do nothing, nothing will happen. Things can always be tweaked and looked at and reevaluated and things can always be better. Don’t be complacent. Don’t be content. Always be doing something and something more will happen. Know that if you don’t do anything in the down times, nobody else will.
- You have to have the skills of a college football recruiter. One of the biggest needs in order to expanding and making sure small groups are successful is making sure you have enough leaders to lead the groups. Pretty sure that is all ministries have this problem. But if you want to recruit (which you do) you always need to be on. Recruiting can happen anywhere, anytime. You better be good at it or you will have to learn how to be.
- This is the best job ever. It’s messy, yes. It can be difficult, yes. But when it comes down to it, you are providing students with a community in which they can be pursuing an Almighty God who is passionately pursuing them. We get to place amazing volunteers with students we love in hopes they take one step closer to Jesus while they take on life together as a group. What a great thing to be a part of isn’t it?