Your responsibility as a small group leader is primarily to shepherd the sheep that God puts into your care and to go out and bring more sheep into the fold. So . . .
· Do not view yourself merely as a Bible study teacher or the equivalent of a Sunday school teacher who presents lessons to the group.
· Do not limit your role to that of a meeting facilitator who plans and conducts discussions.
· Do not think of yourself only as a disc-jockey, whose job is to put the DVD in the player and push play.
Ralph Neighbour put it this way:
The Shepherd never says, “I will tend the flock on Wednesday evenings from 7:00 to 9:30 p.m.” No! The Shepherd lives with the flock, sleeps in the fields with the flock, goes into treacherous situations to find a lost sheep, and carries the lambs in his arms. The Shepherd is the first one to go into the “valley of the shadow of death” to lead sheep to “green pastures.”
I love that description—actually I think it’s a definition—of a small group leader.
Be a shepherd!
How do you see yourself as a small group leader?
Portions of this post adapted from my book, I’m a Leader … Now What? How to Guide an Effective Small Group (Standard Publishing, 2007), chapter 4.
Michael C. Mack founded SmallGroups.com in 1995 and has served as a small-groups minister in several churches. He is a writer, editor, trainer, and consultant in the areas of small groups, leadership, and discipleship. He is the author of more than a dozen books and small group studies, including his latest, Small Group Vital Signs. He also regularly blogs at SmallGroupLeadership.blogspot.com. His family is a small group that includes his wife Heidi, their four children, and their dog, Lainey. Mike is also an avid mountain biker.
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