Monday, January 23, 2012

Why should I be in a Small Group?

          We all struggle with the demands of careers—the frustrations and stresses placed on us, including goals, deadlines, work flow, and office politics.  Our family obligations are important; many of us have children who need us.  Maybe you are already volunteering in the church or community.  Perhaps you are juggling work, school, and family to the point that there is not a free minute.  When you are asked, “Why don’t you join our small group?”, your reply may be, “What?!  I do not have the time!  I cannot possibly commit to anything else.  I am overloaded and overwhelmed!”  To be honest, you are the person who needs to be in a small group the most!  

Why?  It is God’s plan for you to be in quality relationships to Him and with to others in the confines of a loving community--the definition of “church.”  We all need a place to belong and work through the issues of life.  We need to be loved and give our love.  As Christians, our primary thrust is to know and grow in Christ, surrendering and giving to Christ’s glory (John 14-15; Gal. 2:20-21; Phil. 3:10). How can this be accomplished when all aspects of our life are riddled with stress? With small group study, learning spiritual discipline and receiving the discipleship, relationships, and encouragement that small groups offer.  We need a place to grow and we as humans in relationship to Christ grow best in community with people who love and care for you!  

Why?  We are called to be Fruitful.  This is a call to be obedient, to multiply the seed given to us.  We are to make disciples of His Word. We are to point to Christ, never to ourselves!

We need to be disciples of Christ, not of people like ourselves!  This is a standard call of God to do something productive and effectual with our life and faith.  To have this wondrous gift of salvation and do nothing with it is a great insult to our gift Giver, God; it is a proof of ingratitude and nonuse, which would prove that one is either not saved or highly disobedient and foolish (Isa. 27:6; Hos. 14:4-8; John 15). 

Why?  We are called to bear fruit, referring to a growing faith that is fed and focused on our response to Christ that motivates the Fruit of the Spirit and moral and virtuous thinking and action because of God’s love to us and our gratitude and love back to Him.  This is God's love and work in us that flows in through His Holy Spirit and out of us to others around us because we have a personal relationship with Christ.  We have God's living presence in us, living in us (Matt. 6:10; John 15; Rom. 5:1-5; 12:1-21; 1 Cor. 12:1-14:40; Gal. 5:16-26; Eph. 4:1-6:20; 2 Peter 1:3-9).

What does it take to be a faithful and fruitful Christian, to be attached to Christ as His love and work flows in and through us?  If we claim to know Christ as Lord and hang in His Church, we must yearn to imitate Him and follow His precepts, especially when we lead others!  This happens when we show the faith to permanently leave our sinful lives—and, with overwhelming gratitude--follow Jesus.  Small groups are the prime platforms for us to learn, grow, and to share.  We must follow before we can lead.  We are never to be isolated from one another as this will lead us to be unfaithful, prideful, manipulative, or abusive to the people God gives us to care for; such acts are wicked, and we will be held to a strict accounting (Jer. 23:1-2; 31:34; Ezek. 34:11-31; Mic. 5:4; 6:8; Hos. 6:6; John 15 and16; 17:21-23).

Small groups will help us produce faithfulness, which comes when we are in a state of right being; this can only come about from a right, growing relationship with God; this comes by accepting what Christ has done for us and applying it to our lives--by faith. 

And it is out, checkout  my latest book. It is about small groups, all you need to know and have to start, lead and build them or God’s glory. Over 30 years of research and experience went into it. It is simple to understand yet comprehensive. Originally developed for Campus Crusade for Christ, it has been fully revised and it will be an excellent tool for you and your church. Every small group leader should have one, it is your training manual and you one stop all you need to know and it is inexpensive. The Kindle and eBook versions coming out soon…



At 9:42 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Joseph
Thank you for making your valuable posts available. They're a source of encouragement. God bless


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