Steve’s Tips

A healthy diet is a balanced diet. A healthy small group is a balanced small group. Pass these tips along to your small groups to help them balance the biblical purposes in their

Fellowship – Fold index cards in half so they stand up. On one
side, write a fun and creative questions (Describe your favorite childhood pet?
What was your wildest outfit as a teen? What tv character are you most like?).
Place these cards on the chairs or on a table in front of each seat. When
people sit down, have them read their card and, if the group isn’t too big,
share their answer with everyone. If the group is large, have members share
their answer with a person next to them. After they answer the first question,
have members move two spots to the right and answer the question that is now in
front of them.

Discipleship – Read Joshua 3. Notice that the water didn’t start to
roll back until the priests stepped into the water. Only when they acted in
faith and got their feet wet did they see God work. Have each person describe a
time when, in faith, they had to step into the water. What situation demanded
action and therefore stretched their faith? And what growth did that experience
result in?

Ministry – Pass out a piece of paper to everyone at your group
meeting. Have them write down the name of all the other group members and, next
to each name, one or two of the gifts and talents they see in that person.
After people have completed their lists, go around the circle one by one and
have everyone say what gifts they see in each other. This time will be a real
encouragement to those involved.

Evangelism – Help your small group put together a mission statement
for your group so that everyone knows and remembers the purpose of meeting

Worship – Add actions to words of confession. Pass around a towel
(preferably white) and have group members confess their sin by using a
permanent marker to write a confession on the towel. After the towel has been
passed around the circle and everyone has written on it spend some time in
prayer. Then take the towel outside to a grill or a fire pit where it can be
burned. Let the fire be a picture of God forgiving the sin you have confessed.

Steve Gladen is the Pastor of Small Group Community at Saddleback Church. His latest book, Small Groups with Purpose: How to Create Healthy Communities, was published earlier this year.

For more ideas like these, read 250 Big Ideas for Purpose Driven Small Groups.

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