What helps a church grow?
17 October 2022
The early church “every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved” (Acts 2:46-47).
Do we need to gather at home like early church today? What is the benefit of home groups? How to effectively conduct a home meeting?
Yuriy Savochka, a pastor of the Salvation Union of Churches, having many years of experience in conducting Bible study home groups, believes that multiplying home groups help churches grow. Such home gatherings should not be confined to fellowship only, skipping the factor of growth, otherwise they would get sick.
It is quite often when churches encounter one and the same problem. People do not come to church services after outreach events despite the fact that their conversion to the Lord was sincere and with tears in their eyes.
The home Bible study group is a buffer between a new convert and church ministry, with its growth being determined with nothing else but love.
What does it mean to love people? It means to know about them more than about friends, be sincerely interested in them, know their difficulties, pray for them, be friendly for them to feel someone’s involvement in their lives.
Having learned this principle, a leader of one of the home groups shared that one group had given rise to 12 such groups.
Practical involvement in the lives of people opens a way for church multiplication.
How to effectively conduct Bible study home groups?
Talk to God as much as possible to find the kingdom of God which is righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit. It is only in such a heart condition that we are able to do great works for God. The atmosphere of joy missing, a small group will be formal.
If you want to be a good preacher, learn a sermon by heart. Do it not in order to render it word-for-word, but for the Holy Spirit to act and correct in a war He thinks fit.
Draw up a plan of your home group:
This is intended to be an ice breaker.
Choose the right question which facilitates communication. Share about one’s work or hobby. How was your week? What features do you like in people? What are three of the most important victories in your life? What are your life goals?
Prepare songs beforehand.
С. Ministry with the Word.
Reflection on the last sermon in your church for the Word to revive in the hearts of people.
D. Organizational issues.
The home group is a living cell which reacts to needs. Be ready to stop the process and serve a needy participant.
Home groups must be held in turns at homes of all its members to influence non-believing relatives. This is a guarantee of the church’s growth.
Fellowship in a small group is important, but it is also necessary to remember the primary goal which is salvation of sinners. If there is no multiplication in a year, one needs to figure out what a home group is “sick with.”
If a non-believer shows up in a church gathering, shift your attention to him or her. For this reason, each participant can, for example, share a story of his other conversion. A newcomer may also be mildly suggested sharing about himself or herself.
Remember that in this world, where people lack care and attention, the home group can be the very right place to show love to each person.
Based on the materials of the 6th missionary CITA conference, September 2022.