Archive for: October, 2005
Andy Stanley is Betting the Farm on Doubling Groups
Before Northpoint Church ever started, Andy started a group in his home. He met with a handful of other couples to encourage one another, study the Bible together, pray and fellowship. This accidental community group became the model for their exploding group ministry that exists today in every facet of their ministry.
Here are a few quotes from their web site and from some Northpoint small group training CDs that emphasize this passion for doubling groups:
“We believe the small group is the best place for sustained life-change to occur. In a small group, people study God’s Word together and are in a safe enough environment to discuss the issues and challenges of life. It’s also where they pray, care for one another, and are missed if they don’t show up.”
“Success at Northpoint is defined by how effectively our ministries move people from our large environments into small groups.”
“I believe I will have more kingdom impact with the 10 people that meet in my home on Monday night than I will with the thousands whom I preach before on Sundays.” -Andy Stanley
Andy has set the goal of having 100,000 people in community groups by the year 2010.
Hmmmmm….wonder what would happen if any or many of these “small groups” eventually declared their independence of Stanley’s mega-church, North Point Community Church, and decided that their fund$ and time would be better spent elsewhere. That they could have more accountability and more ministry without formal ties to the mother ship, so to speak.
I wonder what precautionary measures are in place to keep such a thing from occuring. Any ideas?
Wondering as I wander…
Winston Churchill had those immortal words to say about the young pilots of England’s Royal Air Force. Many of these pilots were a mere 17 years old. They turned the course of World War 2 in the skies over Europe.
Think of it… the free world saved by a determined band of very young men and that against telling odds. Some of course were older than teen-age – at the end of the War some of the 17-year olds were 22. (Hundreds of the orginal RAF pilots had been shot down which is why the very young ones had been recruited.)
I get the idea that maturity in days gone by was reached earlier. I also believe that living for God makes for a more serious person and so it should. I realize that these are broad statements but I think that I am on solid ground when I draw the lines between true, biblical eldership and maturity. Why? Because the requirements for the older ones, or elders, most all have to do with character – not academic achievement. See Titus 1 and 1 Tim 3.
So, how do you teach your children to accept responsibility? How are you preparing them to take their place in the church as the elders of tommorrow?