Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Reasons YOU should be in a small group THIS WEEK!

I am often asked why I am always so insistent that people join and participate in a small group Sunday School class at FBC. The truth is that there are many reasons and benefits for being in a small group SS class each week. Jesus, knowing the value of a small group, led his own small group for 3 years teaching and investing his life into the group. Let me just mention a few to you so that maybe you might make it a priority to be in attendance this week at either 9:00 am or 10:30 am.

REASON # 1- Partnership

In a small group we learn how to be in relationship, fellowship, and partnership with others through real life issues and circumstances. In this class setting your learn how to practice and show love to others, as well as care, mercy, and grace. All of us need a place where we can go and be ourselves. We all need a place to go where others will walk alongside us and support us through the struggles of daily life in this world. Also, it is through the small group that we can work alongside others to minister to the real needs of people. Together, you are in partnership in God’s mission. You get the opportunity to do something together with others that is much bigger than yourself, your own dreams, or your own goals. You get the chance to really make a difference in partnership with fellow believers.

REASON # 2- Passion

In a small group you learn to live out the passion of your heart in relationship to ministry, missions, and serving the Lord. You can use your God-given SHAPE for ministry to make a difference in and impact the lives of others both inside and outside of your class.

REASON # 3- Potential

In a small group you get to realize your potential for spiritual growth. You cannot grow into spiritual maturity by simply sitting passively in a worship service one hour a week every other week or so. You must exercise your spiritual muscles and being in a small group SS class gives you that opportunity. In that class you are challenged by God’s Word and other believers to let your life become all God intends for it to become. You realistically can learn in a small group SS class how to experience the “abundant life” promised to you by Jesus (John 10:10). You will realize how your life can be more than what it is now.

REASON # 4- Practice

In a small group Sunday School class you will be challenged by God’s Word and by others to live out the truths and principles found within the pages of God’s Word. You will discover how God wants to work in you and through you each day as you live your life. God’s Word is practical and our SS leaders teach it in such a way that you can apply it to real life situations each week. You will discover that it makes a difference during the rest of your week that you were in attendance and participated in a small group SS class.

REASON # 5- Purposes

In a small group Sunday School class you can intentionally live our God’s purposes for your life on a weekly basis as you engage yourself in worship, fellowship, ministry, discipleship, and missions/evangelism. These purposes shape the person you will be each day in relationship to God and to other people in your life. Living out God’s purposes will give your life significance, fulfillment, and meaning.

REASON # 6- Parameters

None of us are immune to temptation and given the right situation, we are all capable of any sin. For this reason God’s Word teaches us over and over again that we must be accountable to God and to one another for how we live out our lives. A small group SS class allows you to build real accountability into your life for doing what is right and choosing to follow God’s Will. A small group SS class literally offers us the opportunity to build real spiritual protection into our lives, families, and the lives of others.

REASON # 7- Personal

You will find many personal reasons for loving a small group SS class at FBC. You will be able to meet and make new friends. You will be able to share your dreams, goals, or even your struggles of life with others who are in your general age range and who will understand what you are going through. You will be able to learn God’s Word in a practical way that impacts you life with others who are simply trying to learn God’s Word themselves. You will find support and encouragement in times of need and get the opportunity to offer these to others.

Let me encourage you to be in a small group SS class this Sunday at First Baptist Church of Marion, Arkansas at either 9:00 am or 10:30 am. You’ll be glad you came!