4 Characteristics of a Potential Small Group Leader

4 Characteristics of a Potential Small Group Leader

Identifying and recruiting potential small group leaders is one of the most important things we do as pastors and leaders. We are wired to look for people who are immediately ready to lead—people who are mature relationally, developed spiritually, sound theologically, and smart biblically. The problem with that approach is looking for disciples instead of doing what Jesus told us to do: making disciples. That means we are not looking for ready-made leaders but for people who are postured and... Read More
An Experiment in Creating Parent Small Groups

An Experiment in Creating Parent Small Groups

This fall, we launched an experiment as a NextGen team. We’ve been wrestling with what it looks like for us to better partner with parents—to move beyond handouts and to work together. For us this has resulted in a small group experiment. For the past several months, our NextGen staff has been working on a small group experience for parents. With the support of our leadership and adult ministry, our children’s and student ministry is taking the lead on adult small groups targeted at parents.... Read More
Behind the Smile: What You Want Every SGL to Know

Behind the Smile: What You Want Every SGL to Know

You know them. You see them every week. They are students in your ministry. They walk in without a care in the world (or it seems), a smile on their face, phone in their hand and a hidden secret that no one knows. These smiling faces represent broken families, baggage, scars from failures, anxiety, pressures from social media, addiction, walls built to avoid disappointments, and a longing for someone to know the real them. These are the smiles we see week in and week out. As SGLs we are... Read More
What You Lose When You Widen the Circle

What You Lose When You Widen the Circle

One-on-one connection with kids about their faith is, without a doubt, my favorite part of being a kids’ pastor. It’s within these conversations where I’m given a front-row seat to God’s grace and goodness in their young lives. Now, don’t get me wrong. There are certainly days when getting a child to open up about their personal faith journey is a struggle. But more often than not, kids have a beautiful way of articulating in their own words how Jesus is making a difference in and around them.... Read More
Small Groups Will Change Your Church and Community

Small Groups Will Change Your Church and Community

“I want to be a Sharon Battson for someone else.” That’s how 7th-grade Ella answered the question: “Why do you want to be a small group leader in kid’s ministry?” Sharon had been leading Ella’s small group since they were in first grade, and Ella, who is now in 10th grade, has been leading her girls for the last three years. Sharon answered the call 10 years ago, when our church decided to start asking small group leaders to commit to leading groups every week and over several years. For many,... Read More