The Impact of Small Groups
At Gloria Dei, we believe in the power of community, and the way it shapes and impacts the lives of disciples. Small groups are a unique way to experience biblical community on a regular basis, outside of worship. I encourage you to take a few moments to read Courtney's small group story.
Our family joined small group several years ago. We had moved to Texas from out-of-state and had been visiting different Lutheran churches in the area. The services at each were great, but none had any groups outside of service that we connected with. Our children attended Day One Christian Academy, and one of the other moms connected us to her Gloria Dei small group. Wow, to say the small group we have been part of for the last few years has been instrumental in shaping our lives here in Texas would be an understatement. My husband always says, "If it wasn't for our small group and Gloria Dei, we would have left Texas by now."
Our small group meets twice a month. We have two leaders and those people have rotated over the years. The leaders prepare the Bible study or lessons for each meeting and guide the discussion. We usually do a one hour study and then eat and enjoy conversation. We all bring our kids and have a babysitter watch them during the study. Throughout the year, we also do holiday gatherings or a "giving" gathering where we have packed school supply bags for kids or care packs for military men and women.
To us, living and sharing Christ with others is so important, and I have seen God work within this group countless times. We are there for each other and will send meals and prayers when group members are experiencing challenging times. We have developed a trust and respect for each other and are able to have difficult conversations about things going on in the world and understand we are all different and not going to agree on issues. But God connects these relationships, and we understand that those differences are learning opportunities for us, not divisions. My favorite part of small group is just knowing that these are my network of people. I can lean on them, and I will support them. Our small group is doing the Being Challenge alongside the Church for Lent, and we are looking forward to delving deeper into this.
Gloria Dei, this is why we do small groups! If you're not already in a small group, I hope Courtney's story encourages you to try a small group during the Being Challenge.