by Jared Musgrove
Every group leader knows the feeling.
It’s Tuesday afternoon, just after 5:00, and you’re headed home poured out and ready to drop from the day. To drive is perchance to dream about how you will relax and introvert into the evening (even if you’re extroverted… you’re THAT tired).
And then it hits you and your stomach sinks.
“Oh, man. We got group tonight.”
It happens to even the most devoted of us. It’s normal from time to time to dread group meeting for various reasons, but I get worried when that feeling becomes normative. So how do you fight it off?
When those moments of malaise wash over you as you think about or meet with your group, answer the feeling with a moment-by-moment faith.
I was reminded of this as I re-read Francis Schaeffer’s True Spirituality over the summer. Particularly, I rediscovered in this old book just what it is that I should be doing as a group leader:
“The Christian life is moment by moment… As we believe God for this moment, the Holy Spirit is not quenched. And through His agency, the risen and glorified Christ, as the Bridegroom of the bride, the vine, brings forth His fruit through us, at this moment. This is the practice of active passivity. And it is the only way anybody can live; there is no other way to live but moment by moment…
And so it must be for us. We accept Christ as Savior at one moment, and out guilt is gone on the basis of the value of the finished work of Jesus Christ. But after we become Christians, the moments proceed, the clock continues to tick; and in every moment of time, our calling is to believe God, raise the empty hands of faith, and let fruit flow out through us.”
The greatest thing you have to offer your group members is your own personal relationship and reliance on God. We should lead our selves and our leaders to:
1) Believe God
2) Raise the empty hands of faith
3) Let fruit flow out through us and into our group participants.
Sometimes this looks like praying for this faith on Tuesday at 5:02pm. Other times it means mentally reminding yourself (and then audibly reminding your group) that we are meeting because God exists, He has sent His Son to be the Savior of the world, and He wants to do work in and through us tonight.
The win for your group or groups ministry isn’t dependent on your ability. Your group depends on your dependency, your moment-by-moment faith. In the end, that will be your greatest investment in them and in your own leadership.