Life Group Meetings

 

Life Group Relaunch: As of September 2021, Life Church has re-launched our life groups!

Meeting Material

Life groups will generally use material from our Sunday sermons as the basis for their discussion of the Word during their weekly meetings. For the convenience of our members we usually include discussion material with the notes for our sermons. You can read the sermon notes and discussion material (as well as listen to the sermons) at the following link:

Sunday Life Page (Life Church sermons)

Not all life groups will choose to use this material, but it’s there if you need it.

Meeting Schedule

Most groups will have a weekly formal meeting that lasts about 90 minutes. Some groups may choose to meet less frequently (e.g. every other week, once a month, etc.).

Meeting Location

Some groups will meet in the homes of one or more of the members. Other groups may meet in a public place (e.g. Starbucks, a food court, etc.). A few groups may even have most of their meetings via conference call (especially for prayer).

Meeting Format

Life group leaders – pace yourselves. Look over all of the meeting components and make sure you have time to cover all of them.

The weekly meeting has 4 main components: Welcome, Worship, Word, Witness:

Welcome – 15 minutes (5-10 minutes during Sunday breakout sessions)
Spend about 15 minutes in casual conversation and/or an ice breaker activity that helps people relax and join in. Remember to start the welcome part of the meeting on time — you don’t have to wait for everyone to arrive. Please also end the welcome part of the meeting on time — you can move on to worship even if everyone hasn’t arrived yet!
You can find ice breakers on our Ice Breaker Page.
Worship – 20 minutes (optional for Sunday breakout sessions)
Spend about 20 minutes giving God well deserved praise.
Here are some resources for the Worship portion of your meeting:
Word – 40 minutes
Work together on personally applying scripture to your lives. Your life group leaders may use the sample discussion questions above for this or they may take a different approach. Spend about 40 minutes — leave enough time for the “Witness” section!

For each question, spend 1 – 2 minutes in silence before opening up for people to respond. This will give everyone a chance to respond and will help to keep the most naturally talkative members of the group from dominating the discussion.

Here are some resources for the Word portion of your meeting:
Witness – 15 minutes
Work together as a group to discover opportunities for serving people outside the congregation and for developing relationships with new people that can lead to them following Jesus. Spend about 15 minutes — end on time!
    • Pray for 1 or 2 people that you want to become followers of Jesus.
    • Pray for boldness to build your relationships with unchurched people and to talk about Jesus.
    • What are your outreach plans as a group? How can you work together as a team to develop friendships with new people?
Here are some resources for the Witness portion of your meeting:

Please note that your life group meeting faciliator may switch around the order of the “4 W’s” every now and then.

Additional Life Group Meeting Components:

  • Reflection – Include a brief time (e.g. 2 minutes) for quiet reflection sometime during your meeting. Potential times for this are:
    • Just before reviewing the questions during the Word portion of the meeting.
    • Just before prayer during the Witness portion of the meeting.
    • Just after prayer during the Witness portion of the meeting.

Immediately after this reflection time, members may want to write down any thoughts or impressions that come to them and anything that they feel the Lord is saying to them or to anyone else. Encourage the members to consider how they might incorporate more reflection in their daily, weekly, and monthly routines.

  • Life Group Housekeeping (do this once a month or more often if needed)
    • Be familiar with our life group goals.
    • Review our connection tools: e-Life & the life group email list
      • Does everyone know how to use them?
      • Is everyone’s information up to date?
      • Is everyone receiving email from the life group email list?
    • Is anyone not showing up for Sunday service or life group meetings? If so, who has been in touch with them?
    • How will the group onboard the next visitor?

Default Material

(Use these when there are no specific discussion questions for the passage:

  • Question 1: “What is this passage saying?”
  • Question 2: “What is God saying to you through this passage?”
  • Question 3: “How can you apply this passage throughout the week?”

Taken from:

 


Volunteer to Help Your Life Group Leader

One of the best ways that you can prepare for life group leadership is by volunteering to help lead a portion of your life group meetings. Mature believers will recognize that just because they are willing to serve doesn’t mean that their life group leaders will be able to “read their minds” or receive a “word of knowledge” to that effect. It’s important for you to let your life group leaders know that you’re willing to serve. Let them know that you’re willing to lead one of the four sections (i.e. “Welcome”, “Worship”, “Word”, “Witness”). Life group leaders will typically set up a rotation so that each member gets some experience at leading a portion of the group. Make their job easier by volunteering to lead. Make their job even easier by being willing to serve for an entire month. This will reduce the overhead involved in managing the rotation list.

Meeting Ground Rules

Life Groups need ground rules so that members have a common understanding of how the group functions and so that everyone will experience the group as safe space. Although they will probably have many common elements, each group should establish their own ground rules. The following resources may be useful for developing ground rules:

It will be a good idea for life groups to revisit their ground rules and to check-in to evaluate how the group is performing from time to time. On those occasions, it may be useful to consider some of the following questions:

  • Describe your experience with Christian community. What has been positive and negative?
  • Consider the following aspects of Christian community – particularly within life groups. What role should you play? What role should others play?
  • The New Testament believers functioned like extended families. What responsibilities do family members have for the way the family functions? How might this apply to your life group?
  • How frequently do you need to connect with people in order to feel comfortable sharing transparently with them? How frequently do you think other people need to connect with you to feel comfortable sharing transparently with you? How might this apply to your life group attendance?
  • What kind of witnessing community do you have?
    • What has your past experience with witnessing communities been?
    • What shape is your current community in? How effective a witnessing community is it?
    • What will it take for your group to become the witnessing community God wants it to be?
    • What responsibilities do you bear in all of this?
      • Children in a household start out having everything done for them.
      • Eventually, children are given household responsibilities.
      • Mature believers (i.e. disciples) take responsibility for ministry.

Revisions

10/22/2021 – updated to add common life group resources block at the bottom of the page.
11/09/2021 – updated to add meeting schedule and location.
11/20/2021 – updated to add ground rules.
11/18/2021 – updated to add reflection questions for periodic life group review.


Life Group / Cell Ministry Resources (for your convenience)

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