A few months back I wrote a post on ten ideas that have shaped my philosophy of ministry. In several recent discussions I’ve realized that I have a collection of assumptions that have a lot to do with the small group strategy we use.
- There is no problem-free solution. Wise leaders simply choose the set of problems they’d rather have. See also The Pursuit of Problem-Free.
- Unconnected people are one tough thing away from not being at our church. Every delay at connecting them puts many of them in jeopardy. See also What’s Your Urgency Level for Connecting People?
- The optimal environment for life-change is a small group. Circles, not rows. See also Essential Ingredients for Life-Change.
- Joining a group in a stranger’s living room is the second scariest move (preceded only by coming to church for the first time). This makes a safe and familiar on-campus first step out of the auditorium a key to connecting people. See also How to Calm an Unconnected Person’s Second Greatest Fear.
- The people with the most connections inside the church have the fewest connections outside the church. This is an understanding that makes HOST a great idea. See also Exponential Outreach.
- Every group of ten has a relative shepherd (and most adults can quickly identify the person they’d be willing to follow). In a Malcolm Gladwell sense, everyone can see very quickly who the leader should be. See also How to Connect People No One Else is Connecting.
- The leader of a group only needs to be a step or two ahead of group members. Even Jesus didn’t look for Jesus Jr. See also Top 5 Signs Your Church Really Wants to Be a Church OF Groups.
- Whatever we want the members of a group to experience, the leader has to experience first. This makes coaching or mentoring an essential ingredient for any small group strategy. See also The End in Mind for an Effective Coaching Structure.