3 Qualities of a Healthy Community Group

No two Community Groups look alike… yet, there are some common characteristics of groups that are healthy. When I meet with prospective Community Group Leaders, there are three things that I emphasize that they must develop in their group. As the Community Groups Pastor, it’s my desire that every Rock Community Group would be growing and engaged in all three of these characteristics:
1.     Relational Engagement (aka – Authentic Community)
As I wrote in another post (CLICK HERE), God created us for relationships with others, and without them, we are isolated and vulnerable to discouragement and defeat. Community Groups are a safe place to be honest and transparent about the victories and struggles in life. As you spend time with those in your group, you’ll find those relationships growing into true friendships. The best place to grow closer to Jesus is in a community of friends!
2.     Spiritual Formation (aka – Discipleship)
When Jesus met with his disciples for the last time before he ascended to heaven, he gave them their marching orders:
Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. (Matt 28:19-20a)
This passage is at the core of what the church is called to do – make disciples. A disciple is a learner, one who is in the process of becoming like their master. And that’s our goal, becoming like our master, Jesus! Every Community Group includes time spent in the Word, prayer, and encouragement for spiritual growth. But ultimately, we each need to take responsibility for our own growth, and then when we meet together in our Community Group, we “spur one another on toward love and good deeds” (Heb 10:24).
 
3.     Missional Impact (aka – Community Outreach) 
The Rock Church is a Do Something Church – we believe that God calls us to be engaged in the neighborhoods around us in order to bring Pervasive Hope to every street and every person.  Our Community Groups likewise engage in outreach projects to the neighborhoods around them. Some groups participate in the quarterly Rock Your City events. Other groups, like Corbett & Susan Stone’s group, go to a local food pantry once a month to hand out sacks of groceries to hungry families. There are hundreds of opportunities in our city and county to meet needs and serve others in the name of Jesus.
 
So how is your Community Group doing? Are there some adjustments you need to make so it will be engaged in all three of the above essentials?
 
Let me know what you intend to this month to make a difference!
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Dave Stewart
Dave Stewart is the Small Groups Pastor at The Rock Church in San Diego, CA. His ministry experience includes serving with Campus Crusade for Christ and in both Associate and Senior Pastor Roles in Washington and California. Dave loves to mentor and coach emerging leaders, and to help organizations develop strategies and systems to increase their effectiveness and impact in building God’s Kingdom. He enjoys a variety of outdoor sports, is learning to surf, and recently completed a half marathon with his amazing wife Brenda.