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Bigelow Small Groups: Will They Become Communities of the Spirit?

August 23, 2010

We begin on the week of September 12th, with groups meeting on Sunday (2), Tuesday, and Wednesday.  Several thoughts to consider:

1) Are you taking part in a group for what you can get out of it, or for what you can give to it?

2) “There is a difference between small groups and community. . . . Small groups may become a means to an end. They can provide for the experiencing of community. Some people spend hundreds, even thousands, of hours in groups. But they may experience glimpses of community in only three or four of those groups or perhaps not at all. While community is God’s intended purpose for when his people get together, it is not automatically present, nor can it be created on demand. Community takes time, commonality of commitment, and an openness to the formation of the Spirit” (Julie A. Gorman, Community That Is Christian, pp. 23-24,; emphasis mine).

3) If your personal attendance goal for your group is anything less than being there every week, no excuses other than sickness, there really is no point in coming. Experience and experts both say that anything less is a waste of your time and that of your fellow group members because community will not develop.

4) While small groups take the Word of God as the basis for their discussion, groups are not a Bible study. They are a personal study of others and self. They are an experience of speaking and listening to one another about the everyday world you inhabit. Groups are a place where burdens of others are carried by others and the joys of others are celebrated with others.

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