People attend church services for many reasons. It’s hard to develop the personal relationships that many believers find so crucial to their spiritual growth in a large service, though. Small groups are necessary to really get to know one another better.
People lead very busy lives. It’s hard to imagine that anyone in your church is looking for one more meeting to attend. To get your small group started, you need to ensure that it’s something others will enjoy. Find a Bible study resource that offers dynamic lessons that spark great conversation. Consider limiting membership to a certain demographic or to a group that shares a particular hobby. Think outside the box to offer people a unique experience they’re not getting anywhere else.
Many churches have an unspoken expectation that when they meet, they eat. If there are donuts and coffee every Sunday morning and snacks or drinks available every time you get together, you go to one of these churches. You don’t have to prepare something elaborate. You can offer coffee, tea and water along with a simple charcuterie board. If you meet near dinner time, encourage everyone to bring something for a potluck. While no one should ever be made to feel as if they have to bring food to attend, having refreshments of some kind can help put people at ease, especially when the small group is new.
The whole purpose of your small group is to develop relationships. Even small groups that seem mostly social, such as book clubs or sports teams, have a relational component. Find a way to encourage people to express themselves every time you get together. Even taking a few minutes to take prayer requests shows them someone cares about their lives.
Hosting a small group, whether at your home or a public location, is a great way to develop strong relationships with others in your church. As long as there’s fun, food and fellowship, your group is likely to be a success.