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5 Great Resources for Small Groups with Non-Christians

I got a great question yesterday and it was so good I wanted to answer it here.  Preparing for a fall church-wide effort, my friend Spence asked, “What are the top 5 resources you’d give someone to lead a study with non-Christian friends?”

I definitely have some favorites.   They’re not apologetic in nature and don’t lead immediately to conversion or faith.  Instead, this list consists of studies that make an easy invite and produce an engaging discussion.

Love at Last Sight by Kerry and Chris Shook:

This study is based on their best-seller by the same title.  The core idea is that while we hear about love at first sight all the time, what we really long for is love at last sight.  I love the premise because it communicates to everyone.  You don’t have to be a believer to be interested in improving relationships.  Everyone longs for the kind of relationship that lasts right to the deathbed.

One Month to Live by Kerry and Chris Shook:

Same authors, this study also will appeal to everyone whether they’re a believer or not.  The core idea is very simple.  When you find out that you’ve got one month to live, there is almost always an urgency to spend time with family and friends.  There’s often a desire to mend fences.  There is definitely the sense that every moment is precious.  When you find out you have one month to live, everyone seeks to live their last days to the fullest.  One Month to Live is about learning to live that way, like you only have one month to live, everyday.

Putting Plan B into Action by Pete Wilson.  

Again, this is a very cross-cultural concept.  Everyone can relate to the reality that life rarely works out according to plan.  Especially right now, in such unsettled times, this would be an easy invite.

40 Days of Purpose by Rick Warren.  

Based on Warren’s mega best-seller, The Purpose Driven Life, this study readily appeals to unchurched friends, family, neighbors and co-workers.  It’s a very familiar title.  Everyone’s seen it at Barnes & Noble and Walmart.  They heard Rick Warren give the prayer at the inauguration and they’ve seen him on Larry King Live.  Best of all, wondering about the purpose of life is universal.  You definitely don’t have to be a Christian to get that.  All of that works together to make it an easy invite.

Mirror Image by Liquid:

With its modern day take on 5 of Jesus’ best known parables, Mirror Image easily pulls group members into an engaging conversation.  Everyone knows the terms “good Samaritan” and “prodigal son,” but not many know the stories behind the terms.  The latest studies show conclusively that people like Jesus but don’t like the church.  Here’s an opportunity to talk about some of the most provocative things Jesus said to his followers.

Want do you think?  Have a favorite I didn’t include?  I’d love to hear your thoughts. You can click here to jump into the conversation.

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Mark Howell serves as Pastor of Communities at Canyon Ridge Christian Church in Las Vegas, NV. He founded SmallGroupResources.net, offering consulting and coaching services to help churches across North America launch, build and sustain healthy small group ministries. He spent four years on the consulting staff at Lifetogether and often contributes to ministry periodicals such as the Pastor's Ministry Toolbox and ChurchCentral.com.