Eight Attributes of Healthy Small-Group Leaders

**This article is excerpted from Small Group Vital Signs by Michael Mack and originally appeared on smallgroups.com.   One of the fundamental differences between good and great small groups is the spiritual vitality of the leaders. While imperfect, healthy leaders have a soft heart that God can use to accomplish his will. They are highly committed first to God and then to …

Three Tips for Building Trust in Your Small Group

**This article by Michael Kelley originally appeared on adultministry.lifeway.com.    Imagine that, for some reason, you’ve been talked into doing something which might be completely out of character for you on your next birthday. So you wake up the morning of that birthday, get dressed, hop in the car, and drive to a small airstrip and get ready to jump …

Preparing the Small Group Lesson

**This article by Rick Hove originally appeared on cru.org.    Small groups are designed to help people grow spiritually, so interacting with God’s Word through a Bible study or lesson is essential. Whether you are using pre-written studies or following the Small Group Lesson Template, it’s important to prepare in advance.  There are two important steps to preparing a lesson. First: …

Biblical Hospitality: Inviting Outsiders to be Family

**This article by Scott Cormode originally appeared on faithward.org.    Hospitality is a Christian practice that extends all the way back to the Book of Genesis. Although in contemporary Western culture, people use the term to mean catering a meal or putting on a party, hospitality means far more as a Christian practice. Hospitality is the offer to extend the privileges …

10 Ways to Ignite Fervent Prayer in Your Small Group

**This article originally appeared on smallgroupnetwork.com.   Praying in a small group can be intimidating for those who haven’t done it before. You’d be surprised how many people are not used to praying out loud with other people around them listening in. This is an essential spiritual practice for all believers to develop because agreement in prayer among two or …

Early Stages of Group Life

**For all stages of group life check here.   STAGE 1 – CG In Infancy: “This is all new!” This is a group that has just formed and is brand new. Temptation: “Let’s just do what I did at my old church.” Focus: To build a core within the new CG and establish a healthy CG vision and culture. Regular rhythms …

What Does Biblical Community Look Like?

**This article originally appeared on pastors.com and was authored by Rick Warren   What the public generally knows about Saddleback Church is that we have a large weekend attendance, but what the outside world doesn’t realize is that the strength of Saddleback is really in our small groups. The press reports what happens on Sunday, but they can’t see what happens all …

Core Values Bible Reading Plan

This guide was created to create a seven-week Bible reading plan through Christ Community’s mission and core values. There are six passages each week that can be read Monday through Saturday. Use the questions under the passages to daily reflect on what you read. Our Mission John 3:16-21 Matthew 28:16-20 Acts 1:6-11 Matthew 9:35-10:7 Isaiah 6:1-8 Revelation 5:9-12 How does …

How to handle 5 personalities often found in small groups

**This article originally appeared on ocfusa.org and was authored by Karl Leuthauser A key to a healthy and happy small group is having free and open discussion with everyone participating equally. And nothing bogs down a great discussion like a know-it-all or an over-the-top needy person. Every group is bound to encounter distractions as its members try to grow closer to …

What Do Healthy Small Groups Look Like?

**This article originally appeared on radical.net and was authored by Cole Shift, Grayson Pease, and Riley Lackey    Throughout much of our Christian lives, we tried to pursue the Lord on our own. We followed Jesus apart from community that knew, loved, and challenged us to walk with Jesus each day. After belonging to healthy small groups in our church and …