Questions? We've got answers!
What are Small Groups?
Small Groups at Life Change are simply Biblically-based communities of people who want to do life together. If you have 2 friends, you can start a small group!
Small Groups fulfill the vision of the church:
1. Grow in God
Centering our lives around God
2. Love Others
Learning to love God’s family
Cultivating spiritual maturity through discipleship
Contributing something back by serving
3. Reach our World
Telling others about God’s love
What are Small Groups not?
A club—Many groups are arranged around an affinity: young moms, retirees, newly married couples, people interested in crafts, bicycling, etc. But every small group has a purpose beyond its affinity. A Christian group exists to glorify God and make disciples. Different groups find varied ways of doing that.
A clique—We get close to one another — beyond the surface level stuff — but we always look outward to include others in our community. Our mission is to make disciples.
An organization—A small group is a living organism. It is a distinctive part of the body of Christ. It is a cell.
Static—If a cell does not multiply itself, it dies. In the same way, a small group must continually reproduce itself. Our small groups are designed to reach out to unbelievers, grow, multiply new leadership from within, and multiply by birthing new groups.
One day a week—A small group is more than just another once-a-week meeting. The members of the group share life together as a family. The meeting is family-reunion time. The rest of the week, group members naturally pastor one another — visiting, making phone calls, having dinner together, serving together, shopping together, etc. When one member has a need, the rest of the group comes alongside.
A classroom—Small groups practice Colossians 3:16: "Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom." The group leader is more shepherd than teacher. He/She is not the group's "answer-man", but one who facilitates the teaching and admonishing of one another.
Just a "Bible study—"We study God's Word with an eye toward putting it into action. "Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says" (James 1:22). Small groups should do "Bible do's" as much as Bible study! "Knowledge puffs up, but love builds up" (1 Corinthians 8:1).
What are Small Groups—"Freestyle"?
Freestyle is just that—groups are free to "do" groups in a way that works for them. Each group can choose what day or time works best. Have young kids? Meet at 5:00 pm or maybe on a Saturday! Work second-shift? Start or attend a morning group. In other words, it doesn't have to be 7:00 pm on a Wednesday. In the past, we've structured groups around the church's schedule and chosen the curriculum. We are encouraging groups to see who in their scope can benefit from a particular study and feel free to start new groups!
What curriculum is offered?
We have a small library of sorts with almost $13,000 worth of resources that groups can choose from. Contact Rita@MyLifeChangeChurch.tv to obtain a current list or jump over to the Facilitator Resources page here. If you have a book you'd like to use that is not on the list, let us know!
What about my little people?
Each group will be able to decide how they want to care for their kiddos. Some groups have the men stay with the kids one week, the ladies the next, and meet all together every few. Some hire a babysitter so they can have a "night out". Some arrange for a babysitter to come to the host home and watch kids there. Sometimes groups want to keep the kids with them and spend time as a whole. The best part is that individual groups can decide what works best for the group. Need help? The Next Steps team is gathering ideas and resources that groups can utilize. It is a work-in-progress so visit it often for new ideas. You'll find it here.
Where do groups meet?
In Acts 20:20, it says, "[you know] how I did not shrink back in fear from telling you anything that was for your benefit, or from teaching you in public meetings, and from house to house." We love how it brings together the direction to meet together publicly (Sunday services) and also in our homes.
Each individual group can decide if they want to meet at one home, move around to others' homes, or meet at a coffee shop, workplace, park—whatever the group decides! If you feel a room at the church is the best move for your group, fill out a Special Use Request to reserve the space.
We do, however, encourage groups to meet in their communities. There's no telling who you can reach when you're out in public! It's also easier for people who aren't accustomed to church to connect with people outside the walls of the church. :)
Will I have support if I want to start a group?
Absolutely! We believe in developing leaders and backing that up with support. New for Small Groups in 2020 will be Coaches. Each coach will over see only a few groups so they can be there when you need it and will check in often. They are there to help you touch lives and connect those in your group with our Savior. We will also be implementing ongoing training so you can feel equipped and empowered.