On Friday I had the pleasure of a girls' night in with five ladies that I was in a small group/bible study with 10 years ago. We girls dove into one another’s lives as if we had never stopped meeting. We shared joys and sorrows, failures and successes, hurting marriages and healed marriages--no topic was off limits. We bared it all for one another just like in the old days.
Small groups/life groups/huddles/whatever-you-wanna-call-them are precious and vital for believers. Christians deeply NEED to do life with one another. Committing to a group that meets regularly and triumphs the word of God, the Spirit of God, authentic transparency and accountability will truly change your life.
Both in that group and many that I’ve been in since, I have seen the power of Christ-followers who are all up in each other’s business. I have watched in awe as groups have prevented divorce, brought someone back from the brink of moral failure, given love unconditionally, called out sin, restored someone to grace--amazing, supernatural stuff. None of that happens when a Christian walks alone. There is safety in numbers.
Lest you think you need the perfect church or neighborhood or social group to form such a group, let me tell you the crazy way the group pictured formed (the photo only shows about one-third of us). In 2001 I had just returned from our 7-month internship at the Harbor in Okinawa. I returned to find that the majority of my friends were no longer in Denver and I had zero fellowship. Mark was fried by my demands for his time and emotions and begged me to go out and find some women to hang out with.
The group formed from a handful of women I barely knew. I met Sue at a ministry fair. I met Alivia in a college class. I met Allie through mutual friends. I simply got their numbers, called them up, and said, “Hey, I know this is kinda weird and you don’t really know me, but do want to be in a Bible study with me?” Each one said yes and invited a couple more ladies and boom--we had a small group.
This particular group of women was special because we were far more diverse than your average group. Black women and white women, Republicans and Democrats, stay-at-home moms and working moms, from the west side of town and the east side of town, new believer and been-a-believer-since-I-was four. You name it--we had it in our group.
Despite our differences, the Spirit of God deeply united us. He gave us authentic fellowship, changed lives, and met our deepest needs. We all grew a ton in our joy and experience with Christ. The fruit was undeniable. And we’re still super close friends.
If you’re a Christian and you’re not in such a group you will languish. It’s only a matter of time. No excuses. Grab some random men and/or women and get going. You will not regret it.