The Importance and Impact of Small Groups
THE REASON FOR SMALL GROUPS
Personal discovery happens in smaller groups better than large groups for many reasons. You can learn, ask questions, and involve yourself in the lives of others. You just can’t do that during a sermon. Spiritual growth happens better with others, in community, with open lines of communication and freedom to speak into one another’s life.
Also, smaller communities are more effective. That may seem obvious, but the bigger the group is, the less like community it feels. A small group helps build a level of intimacy that is easily lost in larger groups. Small groups also help deepen friendships with one another and make you accountable. When people know you, really know you, your life becomes far more transparent. This helps us by providing special opportunities to deal with real life difficulties as they surface.
Finally, small groups allow everyone to participate. There are opportunities to discuss issues with others in the youth group, and these issues can be more openly discussed during a small group rather than in a larger group setting. I believe lives are sharpened and in small groups we grow in ways that otherwise would not happen. I love small groups simply because I can get to know people on a deeper level and watch the Lord build something unique and special that can only happen in the small group dynamic.
- Pastor Darrell Chambers
HEAR FROM OUR LEADERS AND STUDENTS
Small groups with junior high kids can be a little bit hectic, but at the end of it all I am blessed to see the way these kids can respond to questions and see them apply it in their lives. When I lead a small group something I hope and pray for is honesty, transparency, and I also want to see them grow in their walks with God.
- Johnny Cross (Junior high leader)
Small groups have been a tremendous blessing in my life. It’s always been hard for me to be open with people, and to be in such an open and loving environment has really helped me break down those barriers I had with people. I love the girls in my group, not only for their compassion, but also for their personal passion for the Lord. Their encouraging words help me through the week and help me strengthen my relationship with the Lord.
- Ava Perez (high school freshman)
“I believe small groups have been impactful in my faith because I can connect with other kids my age. I consider the guys in my small group my brothers—we have a group chat and send out prayer requests and occasional devotions. I think by having a close small group it allows me to be more real with my faith and receive encouragement and mentorship from my peers.”
- Matt Kim (high school junior)
“Being able to be part of a small group has provided me with an environment that compels me to reflect on what God is doing in my life. They also gives me a chance to hear how God is working in the lives of my sisters in the Lord and have real fellowship with them. One of the things that has blessed me significantly is the opportunity it gives me to connect with my leaders, which allows me to both struggle and grow with them at my side.”
- Emily Pandhi (high school senior)
“As a leader, small groups are awesome because I get a chance to catch up with the guys and get to know them on more of a personal level. My hope is that our small group is a safe haven where everyone can be themselves and not have to put up a front. I want them to feel comfortable. We can't love each other well if we don't know each other well.”
- Zack McCoy (high school leader)
We are so thankful for all that we see God doing through our small groups! We are truly blessed by our leaders who deeply care and intentionally pour into and disciple the students in our ministry.