We challenge Grow Together group leaders to identify others in their groups that might (will) make good small group leaders. As the ‘point person’ (leader) in your group, the idea is to identify others who could be a point person (or couple – or two) for launching a new group.
However, we should consider the question: what’s a “leader” look like?
Some people just don’t see themselves as leaders. Why? Because we tend to look at what makes a “leader” from a secular context. Many of us are used to looking at what a leader is through the filter of the work or corporate management context or the proverbial “fearless leader” image or the type of person who always “steps up.” Some people just don’t (nor do they want to) see themselves in that light.
That’s not the type of leader we’re talking about here.
The Biblical view of being a leader is less about being “the boss” or “in control” and more about being a servant.
The Biblical small group leader takes what Paul says to the Philippians to heart – “Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.” (Phil 2:4, ESV). It’s impossible to do this without approaching being a leader from the context of a servant’s heart.
The Biblical small group leader values other’s growth in Christ as much as their own. They lead others in their group to have this same perspective by their own example (in prayer and in deed). They want others to experience the same love of (and for) Christ on a daily basis as they do in their lives. This includes those in their group, as well as those who may not have ever even experienced the warmth and growth of a small group community, and only think of church in the context of the “shoulder-to-shoulder” weekend worship experience.
Are there other qualities of a good small group leader (planning, facilitating discussion, etc.)? Sure, but let’s focus on this one for now – the servant leader – it’s the most important (as far as Grow Together groups are concerned) and is the underlying driver behind all those other qualities. So, while some may not see themselves as “leaders,” many people are leaders and don’t realize because of a preconceived idea of what a leader is and does.
So, watch for people in your groups with a servant heart and help them understand that they do have the qualities of a good Biblical leader (the rest is, as they say, “academic”). Don’t let them sell themselves short. Chances are you have many (if not all) people in your Grow Together group fit this idea of what a leader really is.
Group Life Deacon
“Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care, watching over them … not lording it over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock.”
1 Peter 5:2-3 (NIV)