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5. Starting Missionary Small Groups

Gary Blanchard

Conference

Recorded

  • December 31, 2018
    2:30 PM
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This message was presented. To the. Texas for other resources like this is a this. Afternoon everybody. See you guys resisted the urge to take a nap after that wonderful meal do you have a good. To meet you is really good if she didn't come and knock on the door I don't know if I'd be here today but anyway thank you guys for coming and welcome let's have a start with a word of prayer and we're going to talk about how to be missionaries through small groups All right let's pray Heavenly Father we thank you for all the things you've taught us all the opportunities that you've provided for us to be involved in active missions for you we want to thank you for the P.C.M. program we learned about and just the other things that you showed us Lord we thank you in Jesus name Amen amen All right so how many of you are involved in small groups anybody here you've got a small group going on in your life OK very good how many of you don't but you'd like to get one started OK that's pretty common how many of you are part of a small group you may not be leading one but you're part of one OK so to say OK well you know Ellen White actually tells us that small groups that whole concept of small group was designed by God Himself He likes the idea of his people coming together in small groups together that's really really important the problem with a lot of small groups today is they began they tend to be inward focused right so just a group of people hanging out together all the time it's not bad it's just there's no outreach as a result but I want to share with you show you today how small groups can actually be a powerful mode of being a missionary let me ask you how how can small groups be very missionary orientated anybody have any ideas how how could they become that way let's hear your thoughts on a small group. OK inviting people to be a part of it OK what else what do you do when it gets too big. Yeah or plan to church. And that's the good news about a lot of small groups they've actually grown into we call them branch Sabbath schools because a really small groups right but they become churches eventually what else would it whether the things consumer groups do to grow and to vandalize do something together have some kind of a plan how many of you have heard of Bible army camp OK Wow A lot of you have bible army camp has something called a unit savior of a units Army units these are small groups that come together to pray and ask God to give them a mission to do together which is really interesting I just got back from Oxford I got to visit Oxford and went to the very place where. C.S. Lewis wrote Chronicles of Narnia actually went into the bar don't tell anybody OK I grabbed a Sprite and that's all I got when I was in there but I got to sit where he actually wrote and he talked to Gerald token they would discuss things together was in the very place where they used to meet and talk about these things but just down the road there was a spot where John Wesley started a small group in his university he was really frustrated that he was not growing spiritually felt like he was going to get sucked into the world so he wanted to gather around him some other Christians that felt the same way he did and so they met together and they started studying the Bible together then they decided you know what we need to start witnessing and we certainly in a string in the community so they started feeding the homeless and getting involved actively involved and they begin to be known as the. Methodists that all started in Oxford pretty cool and I was actually able to go to the very place where they used to meet the room where they used to have their studies kids would make fun of those guys in the Methodists because they had a method they would study together and they would go out and do ministry together. Pretty cool and then they would witness to others and bring them back John Wesley's incredible story of how small groups can be evangelistic and how they can keep you strong in your face. Anybody want to testify how small groups of blessed you how small groups been a blessing to you personally those you the raise your hand yeah. Wow very good OK sense of community people caring about you right there in that small group excellent body else how it's been a benefit to you brother. Who. Church in Kingman Kansas and so we're just trying to evangelize and get people to our town into our church and it was really a miracle how we got it because my family it was a church originally and they were talking to the Nazareth conference and they were asking if they wanted me to donate some money that they didn't want to give us the church through a lot of praying we were able to purchase the church the like the pastors house connected to the church their house pretty much like half a block for $8000.00 get out extremely church so now we're just trying to get the local community to come together and come to our church Wow that's it's wonderful when God's people pray you know look out you guys going to do some stuff for his people especially for his cause right now lifting up his son Jesus wonderful Anyone else want to share how small groups of been a blessing to you ever. Since I started a small group may be able to do months ago what I've learned to realize is that. Even within a group of friends. It's easier for people to share what's in their hearts and what they're going through Currently when they're in a small group rather than what it when they come to church feel it gives an opportunity to people to create a stronger fellowship different from in a church setting for say interesting so you are it's necessary because in a bigger setting you're not getting as close to one another in the smaller setting you can actually get closer more intimate grow together I love that so we think within the same small group of friends we have learned new things that we didn't know before because the small group is getting the opportunity for it's interesting it would say that because in Acts chapter 2 it says they met in the temple and then they also met in homes so they felt that small groups was very important for them to stay strong in their walk anywhere else so how small groups have been a blessing to you. Please so I was a viable worker in West Virginia in a small church and the church is a decent size but they only had like 4 like young adults who were coming on a regular basis and so the church actually asked me to be the youth leader and I was like What do I even do and so I really prayed about it and one of the things I was impressed to do was to begin a small group and we actually started like a Friday night Bible study but I actually asked the members if they'd be willing to open their homes to host us for dinner 1st and then to do a Bible study and we had like 7 families that volunteered to do that and so we began and I did some research to to find out young people in the area who were connected to members who weren't attending anymore or just who were in our sphere of influence and I got a list of like 40 young people who weren't attending our church and so I invited them all and the 1st time that we did it 2 people came and I was like wow only 2 people but I was like you know what that's 2 people and so we did every 2 weeks of the 2nd week we did it again and 7 people came and I was like wow it was 7 people. Growing and then the 3rd week we had 15 and for the rest of the time that I was there we had 50 young people coming from that rotating pool of 40 and and as we began that Bible study eventually we grew into so many other things we're doing the church service once a month and helping with community service projects and we came to do I see and all kinds of things but it all began with that small group and those 2 people who showed up to begin with nice very good excellent So you need to remember that big things can happen starting small Right and that's that's really really important fact small is actually very good too so if you have your Bibles out or if you brought your Bibles with you but I wanted you to take a look at some components of what makes a small group very successful and then we're going to do is we're going to take a look at an excellent plan that you can use to be to turn your small group into a real power machine for witness for Jesus OK so let's go to accepted to and we remember that the church had experienced a baptism a holy spirit a man. And accepted to the Holy Spirit came upon the church and one of the things that the Holy Spirit did is the Holy Spirit began to bring them into unity and community that's how you know when you don't have the Spirit if you're disunity right and you're not coming together in one accord you speak bad of others and but this this is not the case here they're beginning to be transformed and they come together and then Acts chapter 2 really lets us know some interesting things here let's start with verse 42 verse 47 so somebody reversed 40 for us and then somebody read 41 let's give 7 people a chance to read scripture OK so somebody read 40 go and get to do it fast so that Daniela can catch up with you OK and it's getting. Chapter 2 verse 40 as many other words did he testify and exhorts saying Save yourselves from this untoward generation. Then those who gladly received his word. And that about $2000.00 souls were added to them. And they continued steadfastly and the Apostles doctrine and fellowship and in Breaking Bad and. Everyone was filled with awe and many wonders and miraculous signs were done by the Apostles. And all that believed they were together and had all the things common they sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts they broke bread in their homes in aid to get it with and sincere hearts. Praising God and having favor with all the people and the Lord added to the church. Very good pretty power factor isn't it so what were some of the things they were experiencing in small group what were some of the things you notice there are some components in there that are very important for a successful small group that attracts others or some of the components What were they doing in the small groups. They were eating together you know by the way every time you see Jesus there's always food involved if you notice that almost food food is a very important part right why you think food so important. Say no more you said Italian We got it what is it about food why is that important brings people together by the way if you're working with university students the reason you need food is because they're starving so if you can have a small group and you want young adults to come have. Food pizza even better pizza but yes food is very important and we shouldn't think that that's less spiritual if you don't think you're more spiritual you have no food if you're meeting Jesus brought food in there it's important part of fellowship All right what else what are the components they prayed and we just talked about the power of prayer. Or Church was given to your group because they prayed so expect powerful things if you pray don't expect powerful things if you don't pray and that's one thing that I've studied about revivals that happen in the world there's not been a single revival that did not come in the wake of prayer so no prayer and no power you can only expect to do supernatural things in your small group or in your church if prayer is a is a key component and we see that there are very important is God wants to do something right OK what else. He took care of each other as they were mean together they discovered things about one another and they minister to each other in fact the world out there wanted to be part of their small group as they saw that. Very good what else they gave to the poor they took care of the needs of people OK what else they came we know that from accepted to the day they came together in unity very important right they were fighting among each other all right good they met if you notice that how serious this community was very very serious they came together every day they cared about meeting the need to be consistent right very important. Anything else you pick up how did the community respond to them they were a positive force inside the community weren't they. Yeah yeah well how many people were one in one day after Peter preached 3000 so they immediately needed to find something for these people and they they began to somehow they organized it so they all got into small groups very quickly the fastest growing church in the world I think is in Korea and it's it was built on small groups really interesting so small groups is very important and we see that here in this passage also do you notice something else in here do you see any evidence that supernatural stuff started happening you know I think we run a huge danger when we demonize miracles now please don't misunderstand me we know the devil does miracles too am I right in fact he deceived many people doing miracles but guess what Jesus did miracles in fact that's one way he showed through the Apostles that he was still alive so expect Jesus to do miracles but we test miracles how by the Word of God Amen So here's what I would tell you is when you come together in prayer in the name of the Living Lord by the way I'm tired of 7th Day Adventists Christians living like Jesus is dead we act like he's dead we're not more aggressive we're not we're not playing more often we're always in defense mode we're afraid to lay hands on people and ask for healing because but we serve a living like God right can we did the disciples heal in Jesus' name right where we told in March after 16 that we could do the same go out in those who have faith right so we should not be afraid in our communities to invite the living Lord to step in for healing when he when he wants to he's the boss right we're not the boss we don't manipulate him he is the one that works for us right but they experienced all this stuff in small groups and I think that's very powerful Any thoughts OK. I want to talk to you a little bit about this book right here and I'm not saying that this is the only book there is you can there's lots of different books to use but I thought this would be really powerful as a template for you since I used it very successfully with youth and young adults in my churches but this is called 10 days by Dennis Smith There's other books out there called one of them is called the Bible and you could actually use the Book of Acts or you could use the Book of Joel by the way we know that they have they must study the Book of Joel in the upper room how do we know this I think I mentioned to you last class how do we know he talks about it as sermon so they have been studying the book at you how many of you have read the book Joel me tell you something that book is powerful there are some amazing things the book of joy will not only look forward to Pentecost but the book Giorgos beyond that to the latter rain just before Jesus comes back by the way the Bible predicts that there'll be an explosion a Pentecostal a lot of rain just before Jesus returns and Ellen White says we need to be receiving the Spirit now so that when that time comes we'll be ready if we're not receiving the Spirit now we won't be ready on that day so we need to be receiving daily Amen but this book right here is cool because every chapter has it seems like I'm bumping this thing to me let me move this record. Every chapter is focused on studying the Holy Spirit from the Bible and from Spirit prophecy and then at the end it has a question and answer section so you can actually have discussion by the way the worst person you can have leading a small group hope you don't hate me for this is a preacher. All right so let me let me I didn't say a pastor because it could be a pastor but this person needs to be somebody that's able to do what anybody know what's the problem with having a preacher leading a small group. Kind of like what I'm doing now in a small group what should be happening. This pastor this preacher needs to be a good facilitator OK that's what I'm saying not against preachers and anything like that but I'm saying that you need to be a facilitator Have you ever had a good facilitator ever met a what is it about a good facilitator What do they do that's this really helpful everybody's involved the conversation very good so give me some examples of what they would do in a small group a good leader of a small group. And be a little balanced OK they yeah they make it so everybody can contribute that's one way to keep a small group going is when everybody feels like they were able to share a little bit unfortunately when we go to church sometimes we don't get a chance to stretch our spiritual muscles Dewey and share what we've learned maybe during Sabbath school and that's why we should go to Sabbath school but oftentimes even at Sabbath school we have a lecture you know Sam and what's happening is in small groups the same things happens instead this person needs to guide the discussion yes but guided through discussion of questions that make sense OK. What are some How do you ask questions in such a way to get people talking then Q Give me some examples. OK that's good all right stay on those questions yes. Yeah. You want to practice this talk to a teenager start with that person because they're like yeah yeah so 100 a good good good all right so tell me a little bit about your day come on dad really OK when doing this what you do is you ask questions and you layer the questions you start with a simple question and you begin to ask questions that layer it and get them deeper into the conversation does that make sense. So talking to them and getting them to talk is very very important to small group to build relationships. So in this book right here there's questions at the end that you can use but you can also design your own questions from the chapters in the Bible. And what's interesting about this book is It's called How many days 10 days so I've been challenging young people around the word world to have a 10 day small groups or 10 week you can decide to do 10 days or 10 weeks right but here's the thing how many of you have ever had a small group and you were like afraid to join it because you saw no end to it if I sign up for the small group in the small group for advice there's no end Well this is how you can have a small group and everybody doesn't freak out and go oh boy I can't commit to 10 years this is 10 What weeks or days right where do by the way where do we get the idea that the disciples were in the upper room for 10 days where in the world that come from have you ever heard that before they went in the upper room for 10 days and Pentecost came where do we get that very good. You got it OK So for instance how long was Jesus with the disciples before he went to heaven 40 days and then Pentecost means 50 right so 4050 got to 10 days right in there so they met as soon as Jesus went up to heaven they started right then beginning to pray for the Holy Spirit that God had promised right in for 10 days by the way I think some people think praying for the Holy Spirit is going to take them forever before they receive the Holy Spirit but what did Jesus say he said not many what you do see the Holy Spirit what not many days and by not many days Jesus meant apparently 10 so this is really all it takes. To be filled with the Holy Spirit and see miracles begin to happen in God's work move forward the problem is the devil does not want you to take the time to meet with the Lord by the way we don't achieve the Holy Spirit we what. Receive you don't achieve him he's not. It's not a merit system here you don't burn the spirit you receive him and that's why prayers important because when you're praying you're emptying yourself so that you can receive that make sense you let yourself go and you're allowing God to take over and lead in your life and you're you're letting go of those sins and you're you're confessing those things that you how you've maybe wronged God or wronged others and you're making your heart open to receive the Holy Spirit so that's why prayers really important also what helps us to receive the Holy Spirit getting rid of doubt regarding the Holy Spirit we need to study and get to know who the Holy Spirit is so when you're in a small group and you're learning about the Holy Spirit you're actually emptying yourself of confusion regarding who he is and you begin to have a better clearer understanding so that you can receive him right so we don't cheat him we what receive him so 10 days. Small Group is a real effective way to to receive the Holy Spirit any questions if Brother. Was that I am so glad you asked that question I've been waiting for someone to ask me that question Where could you download this book for free hot trying to think anybody know. Youth dot evidence that org at your web site your world use whether used to have an estate or you can download this book you can also download the book that Dr Nelson just was really pushing in his church called steps to revival here that book by Helmut OTT that's a good book I think it's helmet on helmet someone OK but it's a step service another really good book that you can use to but this is free go to youth dot administers dot org And you can download it that sounds cool so free I don't know if this thing works today maybe it's not oh it's not it's not in here it's in my bed thanks bro. But like I said you might want to come up with your own questions using the book of Acts or the Book of Joel or something but I'd encourage you to really focus on God's vision and God's provision which is the Holy Spirit because I think I want to do some crazy amazing stuff so we already talked about the target areas we're looking at cities universities in the 1040 window These are where we need to move we talked about give him 20 by the way if you're at prayer tomorrow morning we're going to do give him 20 there we're going to pre-record it for the 1st Sabbath of next month of January so you can actually see how we do it tomorrow will be filming everything down there because we're encouraging all of you to have your own given 20 men and did I talk to about it given 20 already OK I. Have ever heard you ever heard somebody say give me 20 push ups. Instead of doing that given 20 we're saying give him 20 and that's 20 minutes of prayer based on accepted one verse 8 and you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you and you should be witnesses me in Jerusalem in Judea remember I preach on that that's God's vision and God's provision were challenging young people around the world for 20 minutes to pray for the baptism of the Holy Spirit that we might have the power to accomplish God's vision in a God would open up doors for his young people to move forward in the work so it's 20 minutes of prayer so we'll do it on the 1st Sabbath of the month and then were inviting anybody around the world to put it up on their platform and do their own. Given 20 wherever they are around the world in fact we're setting it up so if you friend our Facebook page our face of caves G.C. use ministries if you friend us there will send you an invitation you can be part of the group and you can upload your pictures and videos of you and your friends doing A G H 20 and we're hoping maybe viral God will use that to really move the church that makes sense bro OK the 1st Sunday our 1st Sabbath of each month we'll kind of explain it so we'll get more details so if you just tune in all right. So please work now for us. We talked about Christ method alone. We talked about these things I'm going to go ahead and just move on to this 10 day groups OK So here's the strategy and by the way the strategy is in the book too so you can just read it if you're not picking up what I'm saying or you forget it's OK you go back to the book and learn it. My friend Collon home travels around the world and does training in this but anyway here's how it works basically you gather your friends together for 10 weeks or for 10 days is that hard to do can be 23 by the way Jesus promises to be present if what how many Ok so don't worry about like somebody was sharing just little while ago going to be a crowd of just be a couple of you that's fine all right so you gather your friends together for 10 weeks days and what would you study what could you study. X. or jol or you can go through these chapters right here but what's the important thing though if you're going to really seek the Holy Spirit and do God's work what's really important about what you study and make sure it's God's word I write very important OK next one would be to studying the book 10 days by Dennis Smith Actually Joy I talked about that the reason I say gather your friends of the front there is because remember in the upper room they all gathered together right there in the upper room they all gathered how many were in the upper room it was quite a few people right but if you think about it that was actually a small group because 500 people were with Jesus when He resurrected so notice what's happened this is a declining church already there were 500 when he went to heaven. And now there's only 120 see what happened maybe you're in a church right now that used to be huge but now it's down to here and that's why I use that passage to always think you're encouraged churches that are that are in a downward slide that there is a way to come back turn your heart back to the Lord and receive the batch of the Holy Spirit. So gather your friends together like they did in Acts Chapter one into right study the book 10 days by Dennis Smith or X. or Joel and pray for God's vision and provision together you need to be united the Bible says if we come together in agreement God will God will work with us and to do mighty things so coming together and praying for God vision by the wake somebody read Luke $1113.00 for us this is powerful Luke 11 verse 13. If you then being evil know how to give good gifts that your children how much more show your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them who ask of him OK So there's a promise there was the promise and with that he was to give us the Holy Spirit excellent very good now if you read the story that comes before that ill actually help you understand the verse even more because in the in before that remember the story you guys remember the story the guy gets a knock on the door and it's his friend there in his friends really hungry but he doesn't have any food in the fridge so he's like will come in OK OK And he goes out the back door to his friend's house and knocks on his friend's house and says Hey man I've got some people here they need bread do you have anything and the guy's a little bit resistant but he keeps pounding and he says finally OK OK he brings in the food and then he is able to feed his friend and then Jesus says if you who are evil know how to good gifts to your children how much more your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask What is he saying he's saying you're not asking for yourself you're asking for the last that haven't heard the gospel message so you might be empowered to reach the last that makes sense I think many times we need to check our motives when we're praying for the Holy Spirit why am I asking for the Holy Spirit yes of course we need the Holy Spirit there's no question that we personally need a holy spirit but Jesus crying out for the church in the last days is to have a heart for the lost. Ask me for the power of the Holy Spirit so you can reach those who are lost in the last days and I'll give it to you I'm more willing to give you the Holy Spirit if you get that attitude than evil people are to give gifts to their children come on that's pretty cool God wants to empower you more than you want to be empowered to reach the lost because God doesn't want anybody to be lost and you could be filled with a holy spirit we're going to talk about the missionaries best friend at the left at the next class about who is always spirit and why is your best friend is a missionary and so I want to I don't want to step too far on that field but we have another issue something else we're going to share in a 2nd so then OK so here you are meeting together and the next thing you want to do is while you're meeting together you want to start calling 5 at least 5 friends and letting them know that you're praying in your small group for them and you want to know what can we be praying for you for this call your friends out of the blue it's very simple they don't have to make any commitments or anything but you're basically saying to them what's going on in your life that my small group can pray for you for and so your friends will share with you oh man that's really nice you're doing that I've been sick or my my father's lost his job or whatever their share these things with you and you say hey don't worry I've written down we're going to start praying to God that God will do a miracle and then during that 10 weeks you check up on them to make sure those prayers are being answered It's a simple thing to do and by the way let me ask you this if your group goes to get together and prays for your friend do you think I will do stuff do you going to hear incredible miracles and your friends are going to be like oh you're not going to believe this thank you for praying this happened or that happened and then you'll see miracles happening in their life and what you're actually doing is you're showing them that Jesus is not dead he rose from the grave that's what you're showing them and so while you're doing that while you're going to your study together you're praying for your friends miracles are beginning to happen you're getting reports you're sharing them in your group now all of a sudden your group is not just about reading the Bible it's about sharing what God has been doing through prayer requests in the lives of people you're praying for pretty cool what you're doing is you're basically opening the door to for God to do whatever he wants. And you're being a conduit for that it's pretty cool all right and then at the end of the 10 weeks this is where you call those very those very same people up and you say hey listen we'd love to have you come and join the group or they'd like to meet you they've been praying for you we'd love for you to join us and you can tell them it's we're meeting for 10 weeks just 10 weeks and we love to invite you to be a part of that they're going to be so much more likely to be a part of that because for 10 weeks you've been praying for them they've seen God working in their lives but even if they don't don't be discouraged Amen never be discouraged it's all about what God wants to do amen and God has a timing for everyone but you want to invite them and then when you invite them what you can do here's what you can do you can do a 2nd cycle of 10 weeks and this time you can study amazing facts with them you see what's happening now your small group is now kind of like a small group evangelist experience with them and you're teaching them the truth of God's word pretty cool and then eventually when you're done with that you can do the whole cycle over again all these brand new people that you've led to Christ and been baptized now they can be part of studying about the Holy Spirit again for 10 weeks when they pray for their friends and the cycle repeats itself any questions any thoughts we call this cottage meetings in our churches we call them cottage meetings and saw mazing things happen as a result of doing this it's easy that's a really really good question when is a good time to hold these kind of meetings obviously if you do 10 days straight or be 10 days straight right but if you dad decide to do 10 weeks when is the best time for young people at let's say you're in a university or you're young adults with the best time for young adults but that So in the summertime OK Friday nights is a very good time for especially for those who are avenues because that's the time when everybody's like what do I do right. And it's also a time when they're most tempted to go into the world and do stuff and then it messes their whole Sabbath up but if they can come together and they have brothers and have fun together that it's really great by the way did you me say fun by the way you know being around Jesus is fun you can laugh you can be happy together. Being with Jesus is a delight in fact the Bible actually says that in your presence is fullness of joy and pleasure is for ever more pleasure for ever more being with Jesus is the most happy pleasurable thing you can ever experience. So it's OK to be to eat together to sing together to be happy to get to talk about what's going in life to be real with each other Gerri prayer requests and needs and to come together with one united passion that Lord we want to be a part of your vision open up doors for us show us where you want to go. Anybody here surf. On the web get one yeah my wife's a surfer and I try it in the ways end up writing me so it doesn't really work that well but anyway. I remember one day I was out in Australia kind of walking around and all of a sudden this surfer comes up it's just real slick you know really cool and then I mean you know what I'm talking about that kind of person and look at him really close and I'm like I know this person is David Asher it looks so jealousy's like good surfer good creature you got all that stuff but I noticed something about surfers I've never seen a surfer create waves if you're see a surfer go out in the middle and start creating a wave so you can ride into shore I've never seen it but I've seen a lot of surfers go out there and wait for God who made the waves right to send a wave here's what's going to happen I want to make a promise to you if you'll commit to meeting together in your small groups 12345 whatever and begin to pray for the baptismal or spirit I promise you based on God's word God to send a wave. Something is going to come your way to move your your little small group in the direction God wants you to some kind of a ministry opportunity it's going to happen and you're going to make a decision does the rave wave ride me or do I ride the wave God is always sending waves into our local churches the problem is we don't know they're from God So the enterprise Nuss one of the one of the great adventures about serving the Lord is learning how to ride the ways he sends God God provides an opportunity you never thought of brought somebody in your church you never thought of or that or that person that everybody said would never amount to anything you shouldn't trust them with any ministry at all that person actually rises up in the power of the Holy Spirit begins to do great things for God people begin to be healed in the congregation and I've told pastors everywhere I travel around the world you need to have a special laying on of hands service. At the end of every church service give Jesus a chance to show himself that he's alive give him a chance why not lay hands on people and pray for their healing in church services at the end I'm not talking weird stuff I'm saying to lay your hands on pray for them let God do whatever he wants to do and then because God wants to do mighty things and his people call on him it's just that we seem to live like he's dead we don't expect much like I'll never forget a time when I was in the church service. I was preaching my heart out and all of a sudden heard somebody gasped she stand sure enough someone had actually died in the middle of my preaching that is not a compliment to any preacher a terrible problem it died of mice or them and they will never tell you what to do and that happens when you preach and so we just keels over what you're preaching and everybody was all worried and they don't tell you what to do in those situations so this person had passed away right in the service. And I'm like God when I do I don't know what to do i course you don't keep preachin that didn't make sense to me I I stopped and I said you know what let's all turn our hearts to the Lord and sing and call upon the war I don't know what else to say but what kept running through my mind his Jesus is alive so let's call out to the living Lord and let him do whatever he wants so I said let's let's pray the Lord and let's sing so we started singing and praising God and thanking him for his greatness and asking him to to to heal and to do whatever he needed to do and I'm not lying to you is that Lucille 70 on this church all of a sudden the back of the church this woman goes. Came right back and I'll have I tested to see if she just fainted or whatever else No Well they said they didn't feel a pulse or anything like that but I want to tell you right now right there in the service I believe I saw the power of the Living Lord right there and don't ever underestimate Jesus we don't serve a dead God he's alive and a lot of people say to me they say well you know Gary you know all religions are equally valid and I'm like you know no because Christianity is the only religion whose founder rose from the dead no the others do that another none of my even claim that Jesus also claimed to be God By the way do you know that no other religions claim that either so I'm not saying we're better than others but I'm saying that God has given us an incredible truth and that is that the founder of the Christian religion is not dead he's alive and he still does miracles today and we need to give him a chance to do that amen and young people when you cry out to God Gee why see when you cry out to God you say Lord give us your vision give us your provision and you create a wave and you show us what our little group are open to do whatever you want to do guess what he will he will show up and Jesus actually said it right here I want to show you this is a really cool go to go to X. one look at this real quick and then I want to turn it over my brother Sean. I love this. And being verse 4 and being assembled together with them he commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem but to wait for the promised the father the promise of the father which he had said you have heard from me for John truly baptized with water but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now every one of us here in this room are not many days away from being filled with a Holy Spirit and then. Sean you got some stuff or so that's this have a quick word of prayer and Sean's going to share something called care groups right we're going to learn about care groups and he's going to give you some new ideas some other ideas you can use right so let's pray together and we'll transition Father we thank you so much for the resources you've provided the authors that are out there that are still wrestling with the Bible and wrestling the spirit of prophecy and in putting together resources to help us in these areas but Lord even if we didn't have that we thank you that you've given us the 66 books in your library called the Bible that highlight you Jesus is the savior of the world and show us how we can be filled with your vision in your provision we love you Jesus in your wonderful name Amen OK. OK All right. In. Really excited to be here thank you so much as triggers for me to share about small groups as well or write how many were here earlier before lunch before lunch OK A lot of you OK great so I'll just briefly tell you a little bit of myself and then talk more about small groups and characters in fact. Right after the session a few hours ago passed a great taking share a little about care groups as well in the next session and so I said Praise God And so we're going to talk about your group so really quickly again for those of you that were here my my wife and I we had attended U.C. Berkeley and long story short we ended up getting married we ended up seeing in the area we ended up wanting to do ministry their God called us to do some things and so through this experience my wife started to really pray and just grab any kind of information that she could get involving evangelism ministry small groups etc And so that's how she started to stumble upon this phrase here and we talked about this before Christ most alone this is for ministry of healing will give true success in reaching the people the savior mingled with men as one who desired their good he showed his sympathy for them ministered to their needs and won their confidence then he bade them follow who follow me follow Christ and so we saw in the last session that there's basically 5 phases here there's mingling or making friends hanging out with them having sympathy or actually caring about people ministering to people's needs a helping them and then once those things happen now you'll actually win their confidence which means you'll have influence and then from there you can actually invite them to follow Christ and share the gospel and so it's actually a lot easier done this way as we share before there's a couple of ways that sometimes will go about it that's not this that can be less effective So for instance sometimes we invert this and so the 1st that we want to do is we want to go and tell people to follow Christ and so you know we're just handing out books and track and we should. In our books we should hand out tracks but sometimes we'll just do that and we'll start with that and hopefully we'll win their confidence and then we'll minister to their needs after that and then maybe we'll start to care about them and then lastly maybe we'll become friends and so this can work I've seen this work but it's not Christ's message it's not Christ method it's inverted another thing that we sometimes do is an incomplete way of reaching people which is to start in the right way so we'll mingle with them make friends we'll actually have sympathy and care for them and then after that we won't do anything else and so we'll just leave it at that and this is kind of what everyone does right we make friends we hang out we care about friends and then that's it and so Christ wants us to go forward so again this is what we want to do we want to do this 1st now before we get into care groups and small groups so this is what my wife and I started doing a couple of years ago this was the year 20142014 after G Y C of 2013 we really started to do this and so what we found is we need to lay some groundwork 1st so you know we were thinking oh we'll just have a small group and people will just come and then they'll make decisions for Christ and get baptized and all of well there are some ground work that's needed right we need to have some friends. And we need to actually care for our friends hopefully help them with things so we can have some influence so then we can invite them to come to our small group does that make sense and so it's not just. A silver bullet necessarily where you just have a small group then everybody comes and then people are just baptized giving their life the Lord by the 00s there's actually some groundwork that we've seen that Christ wants us to do in their lives beforehand so that they're interested so think about that pray about that actually working on the ground work that goes into a small group there's a grill a good book any guest mill with Johnny was OK I see a few hands that go up so him and a lot of people they actually started this Care Group method of doing things in Australia and so my wife came across him my wife came across their work so they actually started doing. Kara groups and then those things just exploded they started Trish planning I believe they planted 3 or 4 churches and a lot of it is based on young people and young adults and people who do not have a Christian background in Australia which is a pretty secular place in general so this is a book that he wrote There's also some some information in there from Mark Finley and others and so I recommend trying to find out more about kara group I don't have too much time to put a lot of his stuff in the slideshow itself but that's something that's a good resource to check out that my wife really looked after us when we started our characters OK So let's talk about small groups characters really quickly so fast or very one through this in detail already so he's still so my thunder there but it's God's thunder and it's God's lightning so praise the Lord for that but the reality is this is a model of a small group that continues steadfastly in the possibles doctrine fellowship breaking of bread prayer continuing daily with one accord in the temple and breaking bread from house to house and so we again see a model there so we see a home like environment where there's food there's hanging out there's prayer there's Bible study that makes sense it's a pretty simple recipe there's kind of these 5 elements and we see that in literally just those few verses in Acts chapter 2 that we've won over 80. OK so how does that translate to an actual structure that you can employ So this is what we've used over the last couple of years it doesn't need to be exactly like this but this is just what we've done that God has been called the blessed and so we start usually at $7.00 to $9.00 that's kind of what we advertise $79.00 is our care group we do it on Friday nights Friday nights a great great time I would recommend unless there's certain circumstances that suggest other days that's a great day to start and then as things grow you can always add more small groups throughout the week we have a couple more that happen throughout the week too but Friday night small groups a great time so we start with food and it makes it a lot easier to invite people to young and old so you just say yeah we're getting some friends over for dinner and we're going to study the Bible little bit you want to come sometimes a simple is that once you have a relationship with someone and invite as simple as that can work very effectively and very simply especially if you throw it out there with prayer a couple times over the course of a month or 2 so we have food then we do an ice breaker Now the reason why I put 730 to 8 is because these are not just simple icebreakers like hey what is your name and tell me your favorite color and you do that through 3 people and then you move forward what we're trying to do as we were talked about earlier is try to get people to open up talk more about themselves what they care about their thoughts their feelings so we might ask them things like say your name tell us about yourself and tell us something this past week that was really amazing and maybe something this past week that was not as amazing something like that and so will go around and sometimes this will go for a 10 minutes sometimes it can go for 4045 minutes depending on how people start to open up but you start to really get to know everybody and get to know little about their backgrounds and especially their week or their month and so we call this an icebreaker time because. This gives everybody an opportunity to share and a setting so from there we'll move into the spiritual times will be prayer now some opportunity for testimonies as well and then we'll have a Bible study and then at 9 we try to end as much as we can at 9 but then we also don't just shoo people out and say OK. A time to go home Ideally after we're done people have been touched by the Holy Spirit Amen and so they want to share they want to learn more they want to talk more and so will be available some of the best Bible studies I've ever had have gone from 9 pm to 3 am on Friday night those are some my best ones the ones that are better the ones I go to for 5 am but other than that those ones are pretty good because what happens is after care groups sometimes people really open up and open about something happen their life or they really want some answers about why there is evil and suffering and then that will lead to questions about the Bible that lead to questions by and to sometimes will go through 10 fundamental beliefs in a night afterwards with somebody that's very interested not always but sometimes and so leaving some opportunity for the spirit to move even after this and through this so this is what we've used it's worked out well for us but there's lots of structures OK something happen or. Let me see so with that I was going to show some pictures here so let me see what happened here so I wanted to share a couple of pictures of what our our whole thing looks like so that you can actually see it all right let me just see if I can get this up and running again very quickly here all right I'll maybe do it from back here just to make sure I think I didn't have it downloaded on the structure. OK so I'll just I'll just read from it all right so this is a picture of just an actual small group care group you know it's pretty basic I'm sure you guys have been a small group before we try to keep it as homey as possible so this is a picture of what it looks like in an actual home I'm sure you guys have seen a home before maybe some of you haven't maybe so if you live in igloos I don't know we actually ended up getting into a student center later which was an actual office building so we had a 1000 square foot office and then we as you can see we try to make it look as much like a home as possible so there's couches there's beanbags or things like that it kind of has this environment because our goal is to not make it feel like a church setting necessarily for the purpose we're trying to reach people that are not churches that make sense so I like going to church I love church I love dressing up I love putting a suit on I love going and singing hymns at church that's what my favorite thing to do but if I'm talk to an agnostic or a Buddhist or a Muslim or fill in the blank they might not like going to church that makes sense they might not feel comfortable and there's a barrier sometimes there with the on church and so that's one of the things that we do you these are old and I'm not coming through for some reason all right so I wanted to show you a picture of what it doesn't look like but I guess you guys can imagine a church setting where there's vespers and someone standing in the front and it's old formal So that's really great for us Adventists but when you actually get some non Adventists that show up there's a there's an automatic barrier there because now it's kind of like I'm not them does that make sense the 1st you got to put yourself in their shoes I want to read a quick verse to you this is from Paul So Paul is one of the greatest evangelist ever arguably the greatest ever I think we can all agree on that and so look at what he says this is in 1st Corinthians Chapter 9 so he says this. Unto the Jews I became a Jew that I might gain the Jews to them that are under the law as under the law to them that are without the law as without the law to the weak I became weak that I might gain the weak I made all things to all men that I make gate Some All right so think about that So Paul he is a Jew right but when he's going to knees when the Gentiles he's trying to become as much like them as possible without sinning does that make sense so if I'm trying to win someone that smokes marijuana I'm not necessarily going to smoke marijuana with them but I'm also going to try to meet them as close to them as possible so at least maybe I can dress like them that makes sense and so this is the philosophy the theology behind the idea of soul winning that we've seen Paul use so you know on this side all the way over here let's say this is like G Y C Saturday morning when my favorite place to be in the world I meant is in the U.S. These are more in kind of the best place you can be in life pretty much and so that's here but then we have all these people that we're trying to reach that are out here does that make sense so we have to kind of meet them halfway sometimes that makes sense you don't want to meet him Oh the way you minimal the way that's too far but you want to try to come as close to them as possible so that there's not as much of a bridge does that make sense that's what Christ did that's why he's fully man and fully God because he could have just not come to Earth right but he wanted to meet us where we're at so that's why we have this format let's try to make it some. Place that feels homey let's try to actually talk about things all right so there's a couple of I wish this would come up but I can just go off of. I can just go off of actually I have my notes here at least so I'll go off of my note to actually share with you some of the things that we actually see happen in certain small groups that I can actually say a. Sometimes put a barrier up there right so in order to have an evangelism focused small group one of the things that you want to avoid is you want to avoid talking about topics that are over the head of the person that you're trying to reach to that makes sense so let's say we have a small group right the 5 of us have a small group here and then we invite pastor will we hold the past year we invite let me get you Laura Ok so we invite Laura let's say Flora is a non-Christian So she comes to our small group we want to avoid going into detail topics like you know let's say. The investigative judgment right away does that make sense or we want to avoid going to things like the nature of Christ right away you know was a pre follower post Paul like these things are great topics to study but if she's come in for the 1st time she might not even know who Jesus is we've had some people come to our small group our characters actually often they've never opened a Bible before in their life and I remember this one girl she comes and I think she was from China and she's opened it up like upside down or something and this is this is this is kind of this situation and so for just going through the Bible quickly and we're going to these advanced topics and you see how can be 2 events does that make sense so you want to meet the people where they're at that come to the group now how do you figure out what to do so if we have the 5 of us and let's say if we're Avonex you guys are Christian and she comes in and she's goosed who has the least knowledge about the situation that we're going to be studying about that night the Buddhist the 2 Christians or the Aves who has the least. Probably the Buddhist right so we're so we're going to usually go over a topic that's most appropriate to the boots now these guys might be like we already know that and praise God they already know it but that doesn't matter because we're looking at winning souls to Christ is that make sense and so they're in the church already but she's just learning so that's how you want to think to that you become a Jew but to the Gentile become a Gentile that makes sense as much as you can as much as you can now how can you do this try not to use Adventist terms OK So what are some Adventists terms Vespers that's one what's another one potluck haystacks S.D.A. Ellen White whatever alliance. Through the process now I love Ellen White Spirit prophecy haystacks I love and I love all those things but again if she's come in and she doesn't know what a haystack is so guess what I'll call the taco salad How about that is that for if she comes in she might not know who Alan White is and so if we're actually going to say a quotation robocall say yeah there's this great book called ministry of healing it's an awesome book and here's what it says I'm not going to say Spirit prophecy says that make sense. It is a he actually making sense this is the most important thing if you guys walk away from anything if you just have this is a principle it's going to carry you through your small group because you're thinking about the new person that's coming and you're trying to make it appropriate for them that makes sense so try to avoid avenue sort of now if you must use an avenue term at least explain what it is at least explain who it is so if we're going to say it was someone says haystacks you know I'll go to them I'll say yeah for those of you that are not aware of haystacks this is what a haystack is that makes sense so that way the new person doesn't feel like there's a barrier and it's like should I be here is it appropriate that I'm here we don't want them to feel that that makes sense OK So these are some things that you can do to be evangelism focused and as I am about to end right now you want to avoid this is what one of the things that we do is we try to avoid page turning Bible studies now I love patron or Bible say's I love here a little there a little I love those studies but in the care groups setting since there's someone new that might never have opened a Bible before they might not be familiar with the Bible what happens when we say turn to Exodus this OK now turn to Isaiah this OK now turn to the what happens. But we're all turning and we're going through it but then how does that person feel if they're not is from the Bible they feel lost Do they feel like they should be there not necessarily right so so we're conscious of these things there's a list of these things but as long as you get the main principle you want to be a Vangelis tickly minded evangelists tickly minded So anyways those are just some things hopefully some of that stuff is helpful but if you if you use the Acts chapter 2 model and if you take Paul's approach to that you become a Jew Yeah there is a time for A G A Y C But when we go back to our small groups that is the time to you know as much as you can to the Gentile become a Gentile that you might win the Gentiles So with that thank you so much faster Gary Yes thank you and Prince Yes that's 1st Corinthians Chapter 9 1st Corinthians Chapter 9 verse 2322 1st 2322. Thank you brother thank you thank you very much you guys blast by that I hope you got some good information to help you have small groups that are evangelists take. Any questions before we let you go. All right OK the next class we're going to be doing is. Missionaries best friend the Holy Spirit Yes ma'am. Just kind of. Like no I should and should ask you this in my turn to we don't know. It's not even a boat because we have to you know so. Before we certain people praised we we kind of dying to it and I'm so used to seeing you know this is when. You see so we're not growing you know ourselves we're just taking time to think of people yet inside the church we already did and I was still. Was when they when they saw the study in the group. I thought of coming here and see how I can help. Maybe do studly truth to start a group. How to start this small group. So elders Bible study we don't have Bible study North Korea no one is the Prius No No Well it's the the it's at the critical point that I should say I'm not perfect but these are problems of the same problem that we need how to study Wow you hear what you're saying. Well we'll probably just because we're out of time I'll speak with you a little privately about that that's very should bring out a concern for a church how many of you love your church too and you want to see your church grow in and she's bringing out some very good points can I share with you something that some people often don't pick up on that is simply this many of us want to wait till we get our church ready before we do have Angeles I'm back here what I would advise you don't fall for that trap it's as you go and read witness to others that you grow yourself and by the way your people talk bad about the church all the time right they can like they're calling fire down from heaven to destroy the church some people say those kind of things and you take them if you lead people into the church you're far less likely to try to burn it down. Think about it anyway just because you don't have it all together your church is messed up does not mean you should be going not going forward and doing evangelism this is what will warm your church up as you bring people in our let's pray Father we love you we thank you for all you. Are Dear young people God We just want to thank you that you gave us another year of life thank you God We see 2019 just around the corner and we're just thankful God that we get to be alive at such a time as this in Jesus name A-Men this message was recorded at the to the end in Houston Texas. Supporting ministries of the 7th Day Adventist Church seeks to inspire young people to be bible based. And so we can Christians. To download or purchase other resources like this visit us online. Or.

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