Monthly Archives: August 2010

Recent Study* Shows One Thing Has Most Impact in Making a Small Group Healthy

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What a leader/teacher does impacts the group. Being friendly, studious, and compassionate are all important. But none of these is the one thing that makes the most impact on a group’s health. Let’s see if you know the answer.

Pick one of the following answers to this question: What main characteristic of a  small group leader/teacher will most impact the group’s health?

  1. The spiritual growth of the group increases the more time a leader/teacher spends in study.
  2. If the leader/teacher has a Bible degree, the group members will be better taught and  thus grow more spiritually healthy.
  3. The leader/teacher that reads and implements the principles from books about discipleship will have the healthiest small group.
  4. The leader/teacher who consistently prays for his/her small group members leads the healthiest small group.
  5. The leader/teacher with the cleanest home and serves the best snacks has the healthiest small group.
  6. The small group that has the most skilled facilitator for a leader/teacher is the healthiest.

Four is the answer. Does that surprise you? “Apparently things depend more on God than on you. Or, put another way, it’s more important to prepare your heart than it is to prepare your notes” (Jim Egli, founder of Small Groups Big Impact).

It’s also important to prepare the heart of those who attend the group. It is more important than giving good information, a comfortable environment, or ample opportunities to discuss the material. The best way for small group leaders to prepare the hearts of group members is to pray for them: their actions, thoughts, and relationships with others especially to God. Pray that each member will have an open mind to the lesson. Pray that the main points of the lesson will land in cooperative hearts and minds.

Don’t make your prayer list complicated. Just consistently talk to God about each member. He’ll guide your prayers. He’ll prepare their hearts. And yours.

CNC small group leaders, if you’d like for me to pray with you, contact me. If you’d like resources on prayer or ideas on what/how to pray, contact me.

Just so you know, I consistently pray for you leader/teachers.

* The study was conducted by Jim Egli and Dwight Marable, founders of Small Groups Big Impact. They surveyed 200 churches and 3,000 small-group leaders.

NOTE: The idea for this post came from the newly released The Fall 2010 Small Groups Digizine.  To get your own copy of this free resource click here.

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