Small Groups: 70 Things Every Man Needs to Know
57. Small Groups
Excerpted from Pastoring Men, Moody Publishers.
In my experience, a lot of the real transformation in men’s lives takes place in small groups. I think several factors are involved.
- Air Time: Men get air time to flesh out the concepts for themselves–concepts that can take ten or twenty years to fully grasp.
- Observation: They get to observe how other men react to the same concepts (e.g., are they solemn, joyful, convicted, encouraged?).
- Changed Life: They see the changed life in other men.
- Visibility and Accountability: A small group of trusted men provides visibility and accountability that a man doesn’t get any other way.
- Male-Specific: If it’s a men’s-only group, he can talk about male-specific issues in a male-specific way.
If I could have men do only two things in addition to the worship service, it would be to read the Bible for themselves and be in a small group with other men. Over the years, these are the two most effective disciplines or habits for men’s discipleship and spiritual transformation.
Encourage your men to form or join small groups. In the best cases, you might build to 80 percent of your men in small groups. A solid effort might be 50 percent of your men.
Group size can vary, but I suggest no fewer than four men to a group. Also, once you get more than eight, air time starts to become scarce.
Don’t let men self-select themselves as small group leaders. Do have a training process so they know how to handle different situations (e.g., a man who wants to fix everyone or a man who talks too much). Don’t recruit teachers to be leaders. Instead, recruit shepherds who want to take care of a flock.
Don’t micromanage your small groups. Men don’t like to be micromanaged.
For More: Go to www.pastoringmen.com and click on “57. Small Groups” to find numerous free, downloadable articles.
#438 © 2011. Patrick Morley. All rights reserved. This article may be reproduced for non-commercial ministry purposes with proper attribution.