GT Update | April 12

Hello everyone, I hope you are well!  What a strange week weather wise, right?

I took this picture of our backyard on Monday morning, 

 

 

 

 

 

and this one outside the church just a couple of minutes ago…

Looking at these pictures reminds me how much takes place in our lives each week.  Often by Thursday I can’t even remember what happened on Monday.  One of the cool things about being a group leader or teacher is we get the opportunity to engage people spiritually and relationally between weekends.  In light of that, thank you for caring for people and guiding them in the cold winter days of their lives and the beautiful spring days as well.

 

 

BREATHING ROOM

In case your group is looking for a next study, I wanted to recommend the one my group just started.  It is called “Breathing Room”.   Here is the description: In our attempt to get the most out of life, it’s easy to lose control of our lives. For most of us, breathing room feels more like a luxury than a necessity. In this series, Andy Stanley shows us how to create a breathing room in our schedules, our finances, and our relationships.

If you are interested, you can check it out here: https://www.rightnowmedia.org/Content/Series/230360  Also, please let me know and I will get a study guide for your group.

INTENTIONAL CHURCH

Lastly, I want to encourage you to join me at the Intentional Church Conference.  If you haven’t been before (and even if you have) this is a great conference for both church staff and lay leaders.  If you would like to attend this conference on Saturday April 21, please let me know and I will get you registered.

Click here to learn more: https://www.intentionalchurchconference.com

 

Thank you, JG

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GT Update April 5

Hello Grow Together leaders, I hope you had an awesome Easter weekend!

While I realize that many of you were at the Leader Huddle a few weeks ago I wanted to recap some of the information we talked through to make sure we are on the same page.

As you probably know, Brian Talty came and shared with us and I am hoping to capture a follow-up from that for next week’s post.  In the mean time, here are some things I want to remind you of.

 

REST OF SCHOOL YEAR

We will not have a group study to go along with our series in April and May.  In light of that, I want to remind you that you all have access to Rightnow Media.  There are some great studies on there.  You can find them at https://www.rightnowmedia.org If you’d like some suggestions, please let me know, or if you are looking for a study outside of Rightnow Media, please let me know.  I’m here to help!!!!

 

SUMMER

Most groups take a break from their normal routine during the summer.  While I realize that some groups are able to continue to meet, for many of us, our rhythms change enough that it makes it difficult to meet on a regular basis.  Honestly, I think taking a break can be a healthy thing too.   Not only does it honor people’s schedules, but it can make them more eager to jump back in in September.

Having said that, it is very important to not completely drift away from your group during the summer.  You still need to gather.  You still need to pray for and care for one another.  So, with that in mind, I would encourage you to begin thinking about summer now.  As a group, answer questions about how often you will gather, where and when.  I would highly encourage you to put those things on your calendar now.  Otherwise, you will get to the end of August and wonder what happened to your group.  I know that might sound crazy, but that is exactly what happened with our small group last summer.

If you are looking for a guideline, I would suggest a once a month social gathering coupled with a weekly email check in.  Please don’t take that as a requirement.  Just a thought.

FALL 

You may have heard that our Family Ministry is making a shift in the fall to using a curriculum called the “Gospel Project”.  As they launch this in the fall, the church will be joining them for a 4 week series.  So, for four weeks the entire church will be studying the same thing.  Pretty cool Huh?  We will also have an adult small group/class curriculum to go along with those 4 weeks.  More to come on that.

The last 3 years, we have partnered with a number of churches in our community for a series in the fall, and used a common curriculum for small groups and classes.  We will be doing that again this fall, only it will happen in October (right after the Gospel Project series) instead of September.  For the time being we are still working on topics for this series.  More to come about that in the weeks ahead.

Well, thank you again for your taking the time to read this.  As always, please let me know if you need anything!  Have a wonderful week!

Thanks, JG

 

 

GT UPDATE MARCH 22

Hello everyone, I hope your week has gone well.  Also, I really enjoyed our Leader Huddle last Sunday. Thank you to those of you who made it out.  If you were unable to make it, we missed you.  I will recap next week what Pastor Brian had to share as well as some of the feedback and observations I walked away with from the meeting.  It was extremely enlightening and encouraging to me.

MISUNDERSTOOD: JESUS ACCORDING TO MARK | WK 6

We are in the final week of the Mark series.  My group and I have really enjoyed this study, and I trust it has been beneficial to you and your group/class as you have been preparing your hearts for Easter.

I also want to once again give a big Thank You to Laura Reimer for sharing in writing this series with me.  She has done a fantastic job again this week, and I genuinely believe it has made the experience stronger.  THANK YOU LAURA!!!

Here is a link to download the week 6 Group Guide: 

Misunderstood – Jesus According to Mark 6

Please feel free to download this and share it with your group/class, or we will have some paper copies available at the Welcome Center this weekend.

VIDEO: Here is a preview of this week’s video:

Week 6 Misunderstood: Jesus According to Mark from Jonathan Grunden on Vimeo.

Thank you again for your ongoing leadership both in your group and class, but also within the church as a whole!  Have a great day!

God Bless, -JG

GT Update March 15

Hello everyone, looking forward to seeing many of you on Sunday evening at our Leader Huddle!!!  Monicals is on the menu, and Pastor Brian will be there so please be on your best behavior. 🙂

 

 

MISUNDERSTOOD: JESUS ACCORDING TO MARK | WK 5

Thank you for joining us in the first 4 weeks of this study.

Here is a link to download the week 5 Group Guide: 

Misunderstood – Jesus According to Mark 5

Please feel free to download this and share it with your group/class, or we will have some paper copies available at the Welcome Center this weekend.

VIDEO: Here is a preview of this week’s video:

Week 5 Misunderstood: Jesus According to Mark from Jonathan Grunden on Vimeo.

Thank you so much!  Have a great week!  As always, please let me know if you need anything!

Thanks, JG

GT Update March 8

LEADER HUDDLE MAR 18

PLEASE JOINS US NEXT SUNDAY, Sunday March 18 from 6-7:30 PM in MOSAIC CAFE for our FINAL LEADER HUDDLE of the school year.  Dinner is provided.

PASTOR BRIAN will be coming to share something important with us.  PLEASE RSVP by clicking here by Wednesday March 14.

 

MISUNDERSTOOD: JESUS ACCORDING TO MARK | WK 4

Thank you for joining us in the first 3 weeks of this study.  Again this week, I want to say a big thank you to Laura Reimer, for using her incredible writing skills.  She put together this week’s study, and it’s awesome.  By the way, if you are interested in reading her blog, you can check it out here: http://www.laurareimer.net

Here is a link to download the week 4 Group Guide: Misunderstood – Jesus According to Mark 4

Please feel free to download this and share it with your group/class, or we will have some paper copies available at the Welcome Center this weekend.

VIDEO: Here is a preview of this week’s video:

Week 4 Misunderstood: Jesus According to Mark from Jonathan Grunden on Vimeo.

Thank you for faithfully caring for and leading the people in your small group or class. Have a great weekend!

-JG

 

GT UPDATE | MAR 1

Hello fabulous Grow Together Leaders,

LEADER HUDDLE MAR 18

Please join us Sunday March 18 from 6-7:30 PM in MOSAIC CAFE for our FINAL LEADER HUDDLE of the school year.  Dinner is provided.  Because this is our final huddle of this school year, please do your best to be at this meeting.  We have a lot of exciting things to talk about.

 

 

MISUNDERSTOOD: JESUS ACCORDING TO MARK | WK 3

I have really enjoyed the first 2 weeks of this study with our small group.  I hope you have too.  If you have a minute to share your group’s/class’s experience I would love to hear it. Click here to email me.

 

 

Here is a link to download the week 3 Group Guide: Misunderstood – Jesus According to Mark 3

Please feel free to download this and share it with your group/class, or we will have some paper copies available at the Welcome Center this weekend.

VIDEO: Here is a preview of this week’s video:

Week 3 Misunderstood: Jesus According to Mark from Jonathan Grunden on Vimeo.

click here if you are unable to see the video. 

Thanks again, and I look forward to seeing you at the Huddle on March 18.

Thank you, JG

 

Misunderstood Week 2

Hello Grow Together Leaders,  Happy Thursday!

First this week, I want to say thank you to Laura Reimer.  Laura has been a faithful servant at FCC for many years, and has served in a variety of roles.  I will not embarrass her by listing the multitude of ways she has served and is serving, but I do want to thank her for writing this week’s small group/class study.  As you will see, she did  a fabulous job.  In fact, I joked with her that I might get voted off  Group Study Writing Island.  Hopefully not, but I guess we will see.. 🙂

MISUNDERSTOOD: JESUS ACCORDING TO MARK | WK 2

I really enjoyed last week’s study with our small group and am even more excited for this week.  If you have a minute to share your group’s/class’s experience I would love to hear it.

Here is a link to download the week 2 Group Guide:

Misunderstood – Jesus According to Mark 2

Please feel free to download this and share it with your group/class, or we will have some paper copies available at the Welcome Center this weekend.

We have also created another informal video to go along with each week of the series.  Here is a preview of this week’s video:

Week 2 Misunderstood: Jesus According to Mark from Jonathan Grunden on Vimeo.

If you are unable to view the video please click here.

Thank you again for the investment you are making in your small group or class.  Have a wonderful day!

-JG

 

GT Update | Feb 15

Hello everyone, as promised here is week one of the “Misunderstood: Jesus According to Mark” series.  As I’ve mentioned over the last few weeks, we would love for each small group and class to join us in this study during the next 6 weeks.

MISUNDERSTOOD: JESUS ACCORDING TO MARK

Here is a link to download the week 1 Group Guide: Misunderstood – Jesus According to Mark 1

Please feel free to download this and share it with your group/class or we will have some paper copies available at the Welcome Center this weekend.

We have also created an informal video to go along with each week of the series.  Here is a preview of that video:

You can stream or download the video here: VIDEOS: Misunderstood: Jesus According to Mark

ENCOURAGEMENT DURING FEBRUARY

Snow Shoveling

With the holidays long gone and Spring still weeks away, I often find February one of the toughest months to stay motivated as a leader.  A few years ago, when I was a Youth Pastor in Michigan, I wrote an article to encourage small group leaders of students during this difficult month.  I hesitate to share it because it is specifically written for student ministry small group leaders.  However, as I re-read it this week, I thought it might be an encouragement to some of you.  So, here you go: http://leadsmall.org/students/will-february-ever-end/

Thanks again, JG

GT Update | Feb 8

Hello awesome Grow Together Leaders, today’s post is a bit shorter, but I wanted to make sure everyone is on the same page about our Mark series, which begins in 10 days.

MISUNDERSTOOD: JESUS ACCORDING TO MARK

The weekend after next (Feb 17/18) we begin a 6 week series, leading up to Easter, focused on the life of Jesus as portrayed in the book of Mark.

 

 

 

  • Each week of this series we will provide a small group study that will build upon what was taught the previous weekend.  We would love for every group and class to join us in this study during those weeks. We’ve seen over and over again the value of linking our groups to what is happening on the weekends. 
  • Each week, starting next Thursday, the study will be available here for the following week.  You can download it and share it with your group members and we will have some copies available in the lobby during the weekend services.
  • There will also be a short video available here that will setup the study each week.

I would love for every group and class to join us for these six weeks as we prepare our hearts for Easter.  I realize that some groups meet every other week.  If your group does, please feel free to either do 2 studies per meeting or have people do the study at home on the weeks you don’t meet.

If you have any questions or concerns, please let me know.

Thanks,  JG

Grow Together Update | Feb 1

Hello awesome Grow Together Leaders,

First of all, I just want to say thank you.  I know you don’t hear it enough, but what you do matters and you are so vital to the growth and development of people in our congregation.  Thank you for showing up in difficult moments, thank you for taking the time to prepare each week, and thank you for taking the time to pay attention to the lives of the people in your group and pray for them.  Those things truly matter, and they would not happen if you didn’t step up to make them happen.  Thank you.

OK, enough mushy stuff.  Here are 2 really important items.

THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO MARK [working title]

The weekend of Feb 17/18 we begin a 6 week series, leading up to Easter, focused on the life of Jesus as portrayed in the book of Mark.  Each week of this series we will provide a small group study that will build upon what was taught the previous weekend.  We would love for every group and class to join us in this study during those weeks.  Each week, the study will be available here the Thursday before the weekend.  More details about that next week, but I wanted to give you a heads up as you plan your group time for the next several weeks. Please plan to join us for this series.  We’ve seen over and over again the value of linking our groups to what is happening on the weekends. 

NEW DATABASE

As I mentioned in the email I sent last week, we are in the process of updating to a new database called Realm.  To help get this ready to roll out to the congregation, I need to hear from each of you, so I can get your group set up in Realm.  I will share more about this later, but there are some really cool features that are going to help us keep better track of our groups and communicate with them.  In light of that, if you haven’t already, please click here to send me the information below about YOUR GROUP.

  • Who’s in your group?
  • What day do you meet?
  • How often do you meet? (every wk, every other, 1st and 3rd, 2nd and 4th, etc.)
  • Where do you meet?

As always, thank you for investing yourself in discipling the people of FCC.  I appreciate each of you. – JG