Redhill Groups: Leaders Page
Thank you for being leaders of our Redhill Groups and offering your homes as a place where people can come together. We really appreciate your contribution to this vital area of community life at Redhill Church!
NEXT GROUP LEADERS MEETING:
To be confirmed.
Want to chat to someone in the meantime? Talk to Rohan and Julie in the first instance.
We met at Brent and Jill’s.
Common theme of inconsistent attendance at groups leading to difficulties in momentum (as per previous meeting).
Some groups finding challenges in interpersonal dynamics (as per previous meeting).
Some encouraging stories about groups going to a deeper level.
Sharing stories of managing conflict in groups.
With the departure of Fi and Mike we welcomed Rio and Briony as interim coordinators of that group. They noted the group has decreased in numbers throughout the year.
Groups encouraged to alternate their program for the rest of the year with reading/discussing the book of James together, and having ‘fun’ nights of games/meals etc. Groups can be flexible according to what best suits them.
Summer 2018-19 marks the final stage of the two-year cycle for these current groups. In early 2019 new groups will be formed. The exact timing and shape of this transition will be determined over summer based on discussions between Brent/Julie/Rohan and groups leaders, as well as the usual summer departures and arrivals for our church.
We met at Rohan and Julie's.
Common theme of inconsistent attendance at groups leading to difficulties in momentum.
Some groups finding challenges in interpersonal dynamics.
Some encouraging stories about groups getting to know each other and supporting each other.
Positive feedback on the current 'Prayer Course'.
Julie and Rohan's group have temporarily taken in what was the Smith's (snr) group: Mintos, Mortimers and Smiths (snr). Brent currently discussing this group's future with Julie and Rohan.
Fi and Mike will be leave in late June. Brent currently in discussion with Fi and Mike regarding the future of their group.
Prayer Course continuing for the moment, and some groups still have some personal stories to get through. Future groups topics currently being discussed by Redhill Leaders and will be discussed with group leaders in winter.
Presentation: Missional Communities
Rohan presented on what it means to be missional communities. Summary points:
The church in the West is not growing. Is our growth a result of 'church hopping' or new believers? Do we want to be a home for people from other churches who have already heard the gospel, or do we want to be a home for those who have never heard the gospel?
We can't expect the local community to come to us. In order to impact the community, we have to be in the community. This is incarnational life.
Some of the barriers between the church and the community are:
Language and cultural barriers. The community doesn't necessarily understand the context of the gospel and what we stand for. They may have preconceived ideas about Christians, the church and God.
Lack of intention. Are we intentional about forming relationships, and committed to the long haul?
Individualism. A feature of our culture is that we fight against anything that doesn’t directly serve our individual interests. We see this is in our commitment to community activities like groups - it's easy to be too tired or too busy. But it's in authentic community that we can find true healing and support for our deep needs as an individual. Like any relationship, it takes work. Part of us (individualism) has to die so community can live! The more we do together, the less individualistic we will be.
Consumerism. A feature of our culture is to believe that we can't help others until we have helped ourselves. Our desire to get what we need flows into our churches too - we can provide comfortable worship centres where our needs are met, but then leave not having time, money or energy left for blessing others. Our churches can be more about attracting people than Jesus' mission. The more we become one with Christ, the less consumer-oriented we will be.
Materialism. We can fall into the trap of believing we need more things. We believe things are actual needs when they are in fact only perceived needs. If we were not so obsessed with material possessions, imagine the resources we would have available for the missional sphere! The more we do for others, the less materialistic we will be.
More information on missional communities:
On 5 October we met and Brent and Jill's. Slideshow is below. We looked at:
Each group gave a brief update. So encouraging to hear about such different groups and situations, but with some common themes.
We reiterated the purpose of our groups: 1. Be family. 2. Promote the gospel.
Brent gave tips on facilitating a discussion. Points to remember:
As group leaders we can be aware of the different 'levels' of conversation. When we think the conversation is about to move to the next level of depth, we can help it get there by asking a question that helps people go deeper. See slideshow below.
We want our group conversations to be about BOTH 'truth' and 'life'. This means talking about the truth of God's word, plus sharing experiences from our life. Some evenings may be more one than the other. But overall, we want to have a balance of both in our conversations.
Good conversations need time and understanding. We can help our groups build trust and have good conversations by learning to be comfortable with pauses. We can communicate that we are okay with pauses by resisting the urge to fill the space with words, or fidget, or look at people in a pressuring way. Also, we can build understanding by 'actively listening' and asking people to clarify what they mean if we are not sure.
Brent explained that we will be looking a spiritual gifts in Term 4. Details here...
Brent explained that he is meeting with Julie and Rohan regularly to work with them in helping our groups develop our ability to look outward and make disciples.
Slideshow from meeting on 5 October:
Group life is exciting when done well! We want to have fun, supportive groups that stimulate healthy relationships and spiritual growth. We invite you to join us in creating groups that are focused on:
Promoting the gospel
We want people to think of groups not as something they just ‘attend’, but rather think of it like family. The bible teaches that we are brothers and sisters in Christ. We are God’s family, He is our Father and we are His children. Our common bond is in Jesus Christ, and through Him we have received our place in God’s eternal family. Through this common bond let’s love and know God more as our Father, and love and support one another as brothers and sisters. We want to see the groups interacting and supporting one another regularly. That’s what good families do; they’re there for each other.
What does it look like for your group to be family?
Welcoming: Let’s do our best to make sure every person feels welcomed and accepted in our groups. As leaders, you can set the tone for this in how you welcome and show interest in others. You can create a group culture that gives people the opportunity to belong, share and interact.
Make memories: Healthy families create great memories. There will be times to celebrate together. It may be someone’s birthday, or something that was achieved, an answer to prayer, or you may decide to take the group for a weekend getaway. Look for those moments when you can create long-lasting memories of celebrating God and life together. Enjoy building family memories!
Embrace mess: Families also embrace the mess. There will be times and situations that are potentially very messy. Sometimes it can feel inconvenient. But when we learn to love as Christ loved us, we learn that love doesn’t give up. Jesus has given us a command: to love one another as He loves us. And we don’t do this alone, for we have the Holy Spirit to guide, equip and empower us to love like Jesus; and we have each other to help carry the burden!
Accept change: Because we’re all different, no two groups will look the same. We are not trying to create clones but families. Be aware that your group dynamics will change as people get to know one another, grow in faith, and people come and go. Through these changing seasons let’s continue to love and encourage, develop real relationships, eat, party, and grow in faith together.
Promoting the gospel
Our groups aren’t just social clubs; we want to see in our groups the transforming power of the gospel. Groups are an opportunity for people to discover the life-changing good news of Jesus, and to be spurred on by others to let the gospel transform every part of their lives.
What does it look like for your group to promote the gospel?
Talk about Jesus and the difference He brings to your life. Celebrate stories of His faithfulness and breakthrough.
Devote yourselves to studying the Word of God. Read the bible together and allow the Holy Spirit to bring revelation and life direction through God’s Word.
Encourage one another in love. Extend grace and forgiveness and pray for one another.
Think beyond your group. Look for ways your group can promote the gospel to people outside the group. How will you take the gospel from a living room to a neighbourhood? How will your group help others hear about Jesus? Encourage people to make disciples, the very thing Jesus asks His followers to do.
As leaders we ask you to:
Prepare a place to meet every two weeks. Either your home or somewhere else.
Communicate with your group regularly letting people know when you’re meeting and what to bring.
Pass on messages to your group about Redhill events or information.
Care for your group. As leaders you will have first-hand knowledge of when someone is in need. Pray for them and see whether your group can help with that need. Please follow up with the person to see how they’re doing, and if you think the person requires more help, contact the Redhill Leaders for support in taking the next steps.
Training and support
Every few months group leaders will get together to talk through how things are going, celebrate the good things God is doing, learn together, and pray for one another and our groups. You will also receive some training in group-leading each time we meet.
If at anytime you need to talk, or need help in regards to a group issue, please contact Julie and Rohan in the first instance, or talk to any of the Redhill Core Leadership (Brent, Jill, Emily, Vaughan, Candace, Andrew). They are more than happy to meet with you, to listen, pray and help out when required.
Go for it!
We hope that each group will grow both spiritually and in number. We would love to see the groups multiply again by 2019!
You are being prayed for and have the full support of the Redhill Leaders. We trust you and God in moving forward with your group and are excited to see how you and your group will grow and discover more of God as you learn to be family and promote the gospel together.