What Are Life Groups?
A Life Group is a small gathering (between 6 to 12 people) that meets on a regular basis to ‘do life’ together. It is an effective way for everyone to feel personally connected to the church community and to learn and grow our faith in an intimate and supportive environment.
What are the benefits of joining a life group?
Listen to Ian Richardson and Cally Creese talking about our Life Groups:
You will understand the Bible better in a Life Group. (Click here to see what we are studying at the moment)
If you’ve ever listened to a Bible teacher or preacher and wanted to stop that person and say, “But what about…?” or “I don’t understand!” Then a small group is for you! Preaching and teaching is one-way communication. You listen while the speaker speaks. It’s fine for imparting knowledge but not as effective for personal application as a small group. In a small group setting, you can ask questions, participate in a discussion of the text, and hear others share insights and illustrations of the truth you are trying to grasp. The Bible must be applied to your own personal situations and that happens best in small groups.
Sometimes people comment after a service, “It would be helpful if I could sit down with some others and discuss the implications of the message today. I need to digest it.” Our groups are using the Sunday morning message outline as a Bible discussion guide, which provides a forum to discuss the message.
You will begin to really feel like part of God’s family. Most people who have been a part of a group say the greatest benefit is the close relationships and friendships that develop. They will frequently telephone each other during the week to share an urgent prayer request or an exciting answer. You’ll discover that your needs and problems are not unique ~ we’re all in the same boat. It helps to know that others are facing the same difficulties, or have lived through them and learned spiritual principles in the process.
Over fifty times in the New Testament the phrase “one another” is used to describe our relationship to other believers. We are instructed to love one another, encourage one another, pray for one another, accept one another, bear one another’s burdens, and build up one another. The only way you can obey these commands is in a small group! We really do need each other. God never meant for you to go it alone in the Christian life. If you’re lonely, the answer to your problem is to join a group.
Prayer will become more meaningful to you. Many people are hesitant to pray in front of others, especially in a large church. In a small group of 6 to 12, you will learn to participate in prayer by having a conversation together with God. No one is pressured to pray, but as you become comfortable, you’ll be able to pray sentence prayers and join in. There are many promises in the Bible related to group prayer. In praying together with a few others, we are drawn together and we find answers to the needs in our lives.
You will be able to handle stress and pressure better. Life groups provide excellent support in times of crisis, change, and stress. You’ll have a sense of stability and security knowing there are people who really care for you and are committed to standing with you.
When someone loses a job, or a family member has an extended illness, or a mother needs a babysitter – these are practical needs that will be naturally taken care of through your small group. Your group will coordinate the sharing of hot meals to be brought in when a family is in need. Many people in our church could testify that they would not have made it through a difficult time if it hadn’t been for the support of their group.
You will deepen your understanding of worship. Many believers mistakenly believe that worship can only happen on Sunday morning in large group with a sermon, the music group, and an offering plate! Worship happens anytime we focus on God. Sometimes that happens best in a smaller group in praying or singing together.
You will be a New Testament Christian. The book of Acts is very clear about how God intends for his people to grow and have their needs met in the church. We will never be able to hire enough professional pastors to meet all the individual needs in our family. God never intended for it to be that way!