Leslie continues her series on Christ-centered small groups and talks about two key ingredients for a thriving small group in this week’s podcast! Discover the importance for your group to be all about Jesus and to turn outward in service to others as a group. Above all, in order for a group to be all about Jesus Christ, our individual hearts must be prepared a vessel that is wholly for Jesus’ use. Be encouraged as Leslie brings everything back to our individual walk with Jesus Christ in this week’s episode.
If you are looking for tips and practicals on how to build a mentoring group, Bible study, or youth group on the solid principles of God’s Word, we must remember that it all begins with our personal walk with Christ. If you know that there is a lack of true spiritual preparation in your own life or you have detected areas of spiritual hypocrisy, it’s time to take a look at your own soul and see what areas of your relationship with Jesus need to be improved. Serving God and living our life can’t be two separate hats that we wear during the week. Because we live and serve Jesus out of the wellspring of our heart, there should be no division as to what is “spiritual” and “sacred” in our lives. Instead of leading a small group to impress others or appear spiritual, study what it means to keep your gaze on Christ and live out of that posture. Build every area of your life around Jesus and you will be able to lead your group effectively in a spirit of humility. You simply cannot impact others for eternity unless your life is centered around Jesus Christ.
Principles from last week’s episode:
- A small group must be truth-based
- A small group must be built upon prayer
Two new principles about small groups:
- A small group must be all about Jesus
In order for a small group to remain centered upon Jesus Christ we must continually evaluate our motives for leading or participating in a small group in the first place. Our motive must be for His glory and not our personal benefit. Instead of asking the question, “What am I going to get out of this?” we should be asking, “What is God getting out of this?”
Give Jesus first place as you prepare and lead your small group gathering by asking God to continually purify your motives for leading your group. Our primary aim in serving Him is to point eyes to Jesus and get out of the way so that He can be clearly seen. When you meet, look for ways to cultivate a focus on Christ in times of worship, prayer, conversation, and activities. Remember, there is no such thing as a Christian meeting that is too focused on Jesus!
If you are a participant, one of the best ways to maintain a focus on Christ is by approaching each gathering with an unselfish attitude. Ask the question, “What can I give?” rather than, “What can I get?” When you are looking for ways to actively point others to Jesus instead of self, you honor your King and keep Him in His rightful place.
- A small group must be outward-focused
God certainly cares about providing answers to our struggles and needs, but He doesn’t just stop there. He desires to help us so that we can pour out to others. As His hands and feet here upon this earth, we can be strengthened in group and individual settings to witness, build His Kingdom, rescue souls, serve others practically, and more!
Look for ways to cultivate an outward focus in your group. Serving others in your community or church will remind you that the purpose of your gathering is not to keep the Good News to yourselves, but to share it with others! If you’re a group leader, cultivate an outward focus in your exhortations and encouragements with those who attend. Encourage your group to serve those they encounter on a daily basis and to share their faith with non-believers. A group that faithfully turns outward brings unity and purpose to your group.
For many of us, attending Christian gatherings has become more of an obligation rather than a joyful privilege. Instead of taking opportunities to gather together with fellow believers and exhort one another daily (see Hebrews 3:13) for granted, remember afresh what Jesus has given to you through the Body of Christ. When we are gathered for the glory of God, there is something powerful about coming together to know Jesus and make Him known!
- John 3:29-30
- Hebrews 3:13
- Catch episode one of this series here!