5 Surprise Reasons I Love my Small Group?
To be honest, small groups are hard for me. I'm a homebody, an undercover introvert, busy and I like to disappear in a crowd.
But circles are better than rows so we joined a group.
Our group meets weekly on Friday nights. Yep, every Friday. For a family of five that takes some intentionality and sacrifice so we can be free on Friday for the group.
After more than a year with our group (and what a year it's been) Here are five reasons why, to my surprise, I love our small group.
1. A Surprise Source of Support for One Another
It has been a hard year and God has used our group as a key source of encouragement, support, and solace through it all. We've prayed together, cried together, laughed together, talked together even in lockdown over zoom.
In a season of Isolation, our group was a Godsend. When things got hardest our group was there, delivering treats to our front porch, checking in at just the right moment, and lifting our spirits all along the way.
2. A Better Way to Love Our Neighbors
One of the things I love the most is that our group gets out of our homes and into our community as much as we can. Not only is it encouraged that Branch Groups serve, but we also dedicate group time to do just that. This makes groups more than a Bible Study and more than a share and care time. We are a team, out on the field helping the hurting, the needy, and the broken.
At the beginning of the pandemic, our group checked with local businesses to see if any would be willing to donate food to help those facing hunger. (Our groups has contacts with families, neighborhoods, and organizations facing hunger insecurity so we focused on that need)
Several businesses stepped up, including Costco, and we began a partnership taking donated food to families and organizations in need every week. That little service project has grown and we've been blessed proved food to thousands of people!
We've also done little acts like shovel snow, write encouragement notes, babysit and cook meals.
Whether your group helps one family or thousands, serving together is better and is one of the things I love the most about our group!
3. A God Designed Way to Grow Together
At the beginning of our group, we focused on inviting non-churched friends to come and participate in spiritual discussion. When then the pandemic hit we had families with a lot of kids join the group!
We now have more kids than adults. Some weeks we do spiritual Q and A with the kids and answer their questions. Questions like " Where is heaven?". "How did people get saved before Jesus?" and "Did God make life on other planets?"
Other weeks, while the kids are occupied, we follow up on the Sunday sermons and study the book of Matthew. We go deeper into God's word both as a group and in one on one conversations. We grow together!
4. We have Fun!
Right at the top of the list of why I love my group is it's fun. We laugh and we laugh a lot! We enjoy each other's company, playing with the kids, and celebrating life.
Every couple of months our Friday night group is a event or activity just for fun. We've had a mall scavenger hunt, driving scavenger hunt, bonfires, games nights, and pizza parties. Because we support each other, serve together, and grow together we have become friends, close friends and I thank God for my group!
Yes, a group is hard for a busy, undercover introvert, homebody but it is totally worth it. God has used our group in a powerful way this past year and I'm excited to see how we can support, serve grow and have fun together in the year ahead.
That makes my final reason I love my group the most surprising...
5. Our Goal is to Grow Apart
The goal of our group is not to stay together forever. It is to grow and multiply! Groups that support each other, serve together, grow together and have fun will grow. We make disciples and develop leaders! So I love it when more people join our group who are new to the faith or new to the church. I can't wait for the day we get too big to be just one group. On that day new leaders will take over and one group will lead to many groups!
It would be easier to stay small and stay together but the easy thing is not always the best thing. When your group grows the church grows! After all, God did say to be fruitful and multiply.
Join a group, be consistent, make it fun, grow together, serve together and multiply! You just might be surprised by how much you love your group!