Want to try something new in your small group this summer? Is it time for your group to find some balance and do a “Go on Mission” study? Then pick up/download Richard Stearns’ “The Hole in Our Gospel, read it with your small group, download the small group study guide (hole-in-our-gospel-study-guide), and discuss it.
Stearns, President of World Vision, argues that the gospel of Jesus Christ is more than just the salvation of our souls. Instead, the gospel is holistic and requires that as “saved souls” we have a responsibility to God’s world especially when it comes to issues of social justice, such as poverty, hunger, water, education, etc.
Taking up this small group challenge does two things:
1. Introduces another way for your group to do a study. Most of the time the Bible is the textbook for our small group discussions. At times, it’s helpful to do something different and focus on a recommend book.
2. Creates balance in “love, grow, serve, go.” Most of our small group sessions focus on the fellowship of being together, sharing needs, and praying for one another as we seek to grow in maturity as we follow Jesus. Great! That is at the core of our small group mission. However, few groups balance out that “fellowship” focus with the biblical challenge of missions.
Healthy small groups — like healthy disciples and healthy churches — will reflect the biblical balance of all five disciple life functions. [Can you name all five? Hint: four of the five are listed above. What’s the fifth function and why is it not listed? Write in your answer in a comment below!]