There are few things more disappointing than anticipating a Holy Spirit-influenced, Jesus-centered small group meeting where laughter, sincere prayers and new understandings of God’s grace, love and commitment to His expectations are made. But I’ve been ambushed by an apathetic experience many, many times. So what is it that brings a small group meeting to life?
Small group meetings come alive when …
- The leader has been praying for her/his small group members throughout the week.
- Group members have been in conversation between meetings.
- Every group member has been spending time with God daily between meetings.
- The group cries out to God expecting Him to do something.
- Everyone is more concerned about everyone else than they are themselves.
- The goal of the Bible study time is to find out what God is saying.
- The outcome of the Bible study time is a commitment to thinking differently or doing differently.
- The group leader models authenticity.
- Group members are honest enough to ask others in the group to help them carry the burdens of life.
- The group takes the time to celebrate significant life experiences with a group member.
Small group meetings are dead when …
- The small group leader is late.
- The coffee is cold, the entrée is burned and the plastic forks break on that entrée.
- There’s not enough food for everyone.
- It’s so hot in the room, people are sweating.
- It’s so cold, group members ask for blankets.
- The hosts won’t put their cat in another room, and some group members are allergic to it.
- The lighting is so dim, group members have to squint to read.
- Group members answer their cell phones during meetings.
- Group members are texting during the meeting.
- Group members are texting one another during the meeting.
Little things make a HUGE difference!