Extreme Makeover: Community Groups Edition
Community Groups have been smashed up and remodeled over the summer. Like in any renovation, we wanted to streamline and make better use of the time we have in groups.
The changes are to make the groups: more sustainable, more easily reproducible and more effective.
But what is it like? And what do we do differently?
This summer I was honoured to be part of a trial group of the new format. Departing from the large group hosted in a flat with a meal with a big discussion that we've been accumstomed to, we met as a group of four in various different locations.
We tried it in people's flats, we tried it in a pub and also in a Starbucks. The great news is that it worked everywhere! With the smaller group size we had the benefits of:
- Being able to meet anywhere.
- Being able to make adjustments at the drop of a hat.
- Getting to know each other really well, really quickly.
I have been in a lot of groups in the nine years I have been a christian. I have been in connection groups, community groups, student groups, accountability groups, facebook groups, group groups and various other kinds of groups.
This new community group form is, by far, where I experienced the deepest fellowship, most heart change and greatest accountability and support.
For these reasons:
- In a smaller group everyone contributes
- Everyone holds each other accountabile
- Everyone is visible in the group
- Everyone is challenged to reflect deeply and personally on the scripture we're covering.
- We had set questions and key areas which we agreed on were keys areas we wanted to see growth. Everyone was asked and challenged/encouraged along the way by each other
- The small group size meant our confidence in each other was high so we could be very honest about our lives, wins and challenges.
- Without a meal to cater and lots of people to catch up with, we got the important stuff quickly.
- Time was more effectively used - we met for an hour and half each time
Put plainly, we were able to get to the core of discipleship. We were able to get right into the meat of studying the Bible together, having meaningful, growth minded conversations, praying together and actually doing the stuff of discipleship. It was deeply personal and therefore able to deeply affect growth and change in our lives as christians.
That is what community groups are all about and when they start back up in the near future we hope that you will engage these groups will challenge and grow you in your walk with Jesus more effectively than ever before.