Before you continue reading the rest of this post, you might want to take a moment and read Part 1 and Part 2 of this series. You can find those below.
Allow me to introduce you to somebody incredibly important in my life, and hopefully you quickly see their value as well. Before I tell you who they are and we get to formal introductions, give me the privilege of sharing with you why these people are so important. Then after we have made formal introductions, I’m going to tell you what they do every single week.
At our church we Think Orange, and we believe Orange is the most effective strategy at raising the next generation to become faithful followers of Jesus Christ. You might be asking yourself, what the heck does “Orange” mean? I’m so glad you took time to ask.
We believe parents are the primary faith influencers in the life of a child. They have more time and more influence than the church ever will, but we don’t believe parents are the only faith influencers. We believe the church is the other huge influence in the spiritual development of a child.
The thought process then follows, what if both the church and home could get on the same page, going in the same direction, and work toward raising spiritually mature children who turn into spiritual mature adults? We believe the vision of combining these two influences is completely possible and also the most effective way to minister to families.
Now you may be asking yourself at this point, isn’t this a post about “words making all the difference”and “small group leaders”? Where do they come into the picture? Small group leaders are our front line strategy at partnering with parents. We believe small group leaders are the face of the church side of the Orange strategy. They are the ones who work with the same children every single week for years by loving on them and leading them to the feet of Jesus.
Hebrews 13:7 says, “remember your leaders, who spoke the word of God to you. Consider the outcome of their way of life and imitate their faith.”
Small group leaders are where….
- kids get to see faith worked out not only at home but also at church.
- the family circle of influence becomes wider.
- your kids have a face associated with church outside of the pastoral staff.
- your kids gain lifelong mentors.
Small group leaders from birth to graduation are regular faith influencers who show up every week for their few.
Like I said, they are incredibly important, and now that you have a picture of who small group leaders are. Let me share three ways their words make all the difference.
- Small group Leaders Encourage– Our small group leaders encourage and pray for our students and parents regularly. The few kids and parents they minister too become their own personal flock they need to attend and care for. Small group leaders text, call, pray and do whatever they can to encourage the people they are ministering to each week.
- Small Group Leaders Share Christ– Our goal above all else is to lead people to Jesus, and that looks a little bit different at every age. Regardless of how it looks our small group leaders every single week are pointing people back to scripture and back to the words of Jesus. We want kids to know that God loves them and has a plan for their life, and small group leaders are communicating this message every single week.
- Small group leaders give the same message as home– Parents feel the regular struggle of trying to teach their kid a lesson, but their child just won’t listen. Then one day they come home and they say, “Adult so and so said xyz.” While the parent sits there thinking, “I’VE BEEN SAYING THAT TO YOU FOR WEEKS!” Instead of fighting against this trend we figure why not put great adult leaders in your kids life who can give the exact same message as home. Once again it helps the church and the home be on the same page. They think Orange.
If you are a small group leader, continue doing a great work.
If you are a parent and you don’t know who your small group leader is, then take time this week and find out who he or she is.
If you are a pastor and your church doesn’t have small group leaders in the family ministries, I cannot encourage you enough to develop a system for great small groups. If you want help getting started you can always check out my book. There is a special on kindle this week for $2.99