HEARTS FOR GOD; HANDS FOR MAN
Now that you know that BSG is the small group ministry division of SOLID GROUND the question is why should you care?
Eight Reasons to Find Your Place in a Small Group as Soon as Possible!
1. You will understand the Bible better in a small group.
If you’ve ever listened to a Bible teacher or preacher and wanted to stop that person and say, “But what about…?” or “I don’t understand,” then a small group is for you! Preaching and teaching is one-way communication. You listen while the speaker speaks. It’s fine for imparting knowledge but not as effective for personal application as a small group can be. In a small group setting you can ask questions, participate in a discussion of the text and hear others share insights and illustrations of the truth you are trying to grasp. The Bible must be applied to your own personal situations and that happens best in small groups.
2. You will begin to really feel like part of God’s family.
Most people who have been a part of a group say the greatest benefit is the close relationships and friendships that develop. They will frequently telephone each other during the week to share an urgent prayer request or an exciting answer. You’ll discover that your needs and problems are not unique ~ we’re all in the same boat. It helps to know that others are facing the same difficulties or have lived through them and learned spiritual principles in the process.
Over fifty times in the New Testament the phrase “one another” is used to describe our relationship to other believers. We are instructed to love one another, encourage one another, pray for one another, accept one another, bear one another’s burdens, and build up one another. Participating in a small group gives greater opportunity to obey these commands. We really do need each other. God never meant for you to go it alone in the Christian life. If you’re lonely, one thing that will help will be to participate in a small Bible study group.
3. Prayer will become more meaningful to you.
Many people are hesitant to pray in front of others, especially in a large church. In a small group you will learn to participate in prayer by having a conversation together with God. No one is pressured to pray, but as you become comfortable you’ll be able to pray sentence prayers and join in. There are many promises in the Bible related to group prayer. In praying together we are drawn together. We find answers to the needs in our lives.
4. You will be able to handle stress and pressure better.
Small Bible study groups provide excellent support in times of crisis, change and stress. You’ll have a sense of stability and security knowing there are people who really care for you and are committed to standing with you.
When someone loses a job, a family member has an extended illness or a mother needs a babysitter – these are all examples of practical needs that will be naturally taken care of through your small group fellowship. Your group will coordinate the sharing of hot meals to be brought in when a family is in need.
5. You will have a natural way to share Christ with friends, relatives and work associates.
It may be that some of your friends who don’t I know the Lord wouldn’t be caught dead in a church building. They have a preconceived idea and just the thought makes them defensive. But those same people may be open to an invitation to a casual Bible discussion in a home or office setting. In a small Bible study group your unbelieving friend can ask questions and express honest doubts without feeling “put on the spot”. When your friend sees the love, warmth and honesty of your group it will make them more receptive to the Good News.
6. You will develop leadership skills you never knew you had!
The Bible teaches that every believer is given certain talents or “gifts” to benefit others in the family of God. Unfortunately most Christians remain as Sunday morning spectators all their lives because large group meetings are primarily “sit and listen” situations. As you share and participate in a relaxed small group setting you will discover your confidence and self-esteem rising. This will help you at work, at church and in every other relationship.
7. You will deepen your understanding of worship.
Many believers mistakenly believe that worship can only happen on Sunday morning in a large group with a sermon, a choir and an offering plate! Worship happens anytime we focus on God. Sometimes that happens best in a smaller group in praying or singing together. At BSG, our Bible Study Group leaders are encouraged and authorized to serve the Lord’s Supper whenever the group wants to have a communion service.
8. You can become involved in a life and ministry as described in the New Testament of first century believers!
The book of Acts is very clear about how God intends for His people to grow and have their needs met in the church. While the large congregation has and does serve a valuable purpose within the body, no large church building or program will ever be able to hire enough professional pastors to meet all the individual needs in their family. God never intended for it to be that way! However, in a small Bible Study Group those needs can be more appropriately addressed through a more intimate setting. By their design BSGs provide the appropriate atmosphere for becoming one in Christ Jesus.
THE TRUE EFFORTS OF BSG (Bible Study Group) IS TO HELP FACILITATE THE CLEAR TEACHINGS OF SCRIPTURE, ENCOURAGE SPIRITUAL GROWTH AS DISCIPLES OF JESUS, AND DEEPEN RELATIONSHIPS WITHIN THE BODY:
“They devoted themselves to the apostles teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread, and to prayer. All the believers were together and had everything in common. Every day they continued to meet together… they broke bread in their homes and ate together… and the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.” (Acts 2:42, 44, 46-47)