Are you feeling worn out and tired as a small group leader? Do you feel like you’re the only one preparing and doing all the work while everybody else just shows up and enjoys the fellowship?
If you can relate, you’re most likely “carrying the whole load” of responsibility in your group. While it’s true that as a small group leader you simply will carry the majority of the responsibility and general oversight of the group, it is unrealistic to think that it’s your job to “do it all.” In fact, you will never be an effective small group leader if you do.
To illustrate this point, think about the game of golf. For the most part, golf is an individual sport where one player gets out on the tee box and hits the ball down the fairway, while the gallery watches and follows along. Sometimes, in a small group it is often this way as well. It’s the leader who’s on the “tee box” and it’s their job to “tee up” the discussion and then hit the ball down the field while all of the people follow along and simply watch as spectators.
Now, shift your thinking to see your small group more as a baseball team. It’s not just one person, but nine people all contributing and playing different positions based on their strengths and abilities. No one wins a baseball game by himself or herself. It takes a team. And the same thing is true for a small group.
Paul wrote in Ephesians that the body of Christ is at its healthiest when all of its different parts are working together. And your small group needs to be like a microcosm of the church where everybody is involved using their gifts and abilities and contributing to the life of the church body so that no one person gets worn out in the process.
Just don’t be afraid to ask people to help. Sometimes, as leaders, we think, “Oh, that person is busy or they have a demanding job or a bunch of kids at home.” That may be true, but let them say no and let them determine their own boundaries.
Think about all the different people in your group, and based on who they are as individuals with their gifts, think of one thing that you could ask them to do. Over the next week or month, find a role or even just a small task for every single person in your small group. It could be something little like helping out with refreshments, managing your group’s prayer list, organizing outside group events and even keeping track of everyone’s birthdays and anniversaries.
Getting people involved with not only make you a more effective leader but it will also increase group ownership among your members. It won’t be long before you notice that people will begin to feel like it’s not just your group as the small group leader, but now it’s our group, and it’s my group because I have a role and a responsibility.
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