In this series we’re exploring how to lead dynamic small groups for the sake of the student world. Below is adapted from a section in the new workbook Small Groups: Big Mission.
When I was younger, I used to view evangelism as that intimidating activity that only “uber-spiritual” people were equipped to do, or the slightly eccentric ones who were prepared to shout down the streets about Jesus’ imminent return. Thankfully, I grew out of that as I was discipled and my faith grew in a church where testimonies are encouraged and shared. I realised that evangelism is an everyday thing, a way of conducting ourselves so that we grab every opportunity to share Jesus with those around us.
When Jesus called the first students (disciples) to follow him, the call was “Come follow me, and I will make you fishers of men” (Matthew 4), so small groups need to become hubs in which evangelism as a lifestyle is embraced and encouraged. Vitally, the Holy Spirit needs to be invited into this, so it doesn’t become an over-planned, pressurised task with limited vision.
Small Groups: Big Mission has loads of great ideas for how to develop everyday evangelism, but none of it is of value unless prayer is at the core of your small group’s strategy. Prayer is how we stir up the activity of God in our friends’ lives, how we can gain His perspective, and where faith begins to build. As a group prays together, confidence will build, to pray bigger prayers, to go bold in an invitation to a friend, or even pray for a stranger; as the Holy Spirit will be directing their actions.
Part of doing everyday evangelism well together means recognising that not everyone shares Jesus with others in the same way that their friends would. Mission Styles is an online resource created by Fusion that helps you discover how you most naturally share Jesus. It also helps you learn other ways of sharing your faith that might more effectively connect with people around you who aren’t wired just like you. This would be a great place for a small group to begin their everyday evangelism together- discover your mission style and then work out how you can best work together as a group.
Our new workbook Small Groups:Big Mission is out now. We recommend going through the content with leaders and students. The Fusion team deliver small group training empowered by the Holy Spirit, prayer and dynamic content from the workbook.