Small Groups are different depending on the church you go to. Many churches don’t use their small groups effectively. This post I will discuss the many forms of small group and how ineffective they are. I will get to the purpose of a small group and how it should function. We should remain focused on how a small group should glorify God instead of our church.
Hebrews 10:23-25 (NASB):
“Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful; and let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near.”
Our small groups need to be accountable to another. A small group doesn’t have to be labeled a small group by the church. If you gather in God’s name it is a small group. This is even called a church. Each one of us have our own personal struggle that weigh us down. This becomes an anchor in the pursuit of God’s will. We need to have an effective church. The world doesn’t see our righteousness but our greatest struggle. It isn’t fair, but it is the truth.
Many times, a church gives a small group a “series” to examine. It is done to reflect the points given during the Sunday sermon. You must be careful here. There is a tendency to pick scripture from numerous parts of the bible to talk about a specific topic. When you do this, they may pick passages that are very unrelated to each other. This is incredibly dishonest. Another thing I notice is some of these “series” they pick passages from different translations. There are a few translations that don’t resemble the truth. Picking from different translations is like using scissors to piece together a puzzle. The narrative of your topic becomes more important. If you find a small group using scripture hopping run from it.
The teaching needs to be relevant to our lives. There needs to be a call to action at the end of the group meeting. This flows directly into accountability. I have personally been in many small groups where the 90 percent of the time is dedicated to defining the meaning of a verse. The bible is very simple. While we make the bible more nuanced the truth becomes lost. The bible isn’t a book you want it to be. It is a book to live by. You should read the verses for digestion and not pontificating. It may be daunting to call out to specifics in your group’s lives, but it is extremely necessary. To be effective this must be done.
I strongly believe your small groups need to reflect what I have written here. Getting caught up in scripture hopping is easy. It takes no discernment and could lead people astray. This by default makes the scripture not relevant. It is an advertisement of the Sunday’s service. Also, we get too caught up in defining the bible instead of using the bible. God doesn’t give us something hard to understand where only the elite can figure it out. If this stuff I discussed in this blog is happening, then we are missing out on how effective our small group can truly be.