SmallGroupTrader.com (sgt) has published another article that I wrote. It’s truly an honor to be able to write for them. They have a great vision for creating and providing resources for small group leaders and are really doing some innovative things. (Check out the free video training clips for small group leaders.) It’s taken many years of full-time ministry to become the leader that I am, and yet I can do a little research on their site and see all kinds of ways that I can improve. Some of the best names in the church world (particularly the small group world) are represented there and I feel blessed to be able to be a part.
This latest article is titled: “Practical Ways to Connect as a Group” I tried to give a little theory and a few specific ideas for building community in a small group setting. The original idea came from a sgt (small group trader) list of “needed” articles. The request was “How do I Help my group Gel?” The final edit was done by the sgt folks.
I’d also encourage you to check out a small group guru and Miranda’s lifelong family friend Heather Zempel while you’re there. She’s got some great articles on sgt, an incredible blog, and has even written a brand new small group resource called Sacred Roads which was published earlier this month.
Check out this article from Ed Stetzer’s blog. It describes some pretty interesting research on the state of affairs for most Christian parents today. What does it mean when less than 10% of Christian parents think that “being Godly” or “having faith” is one of the marks of parental success? That means that over 90% of “Christians” believe they can be successful parents without passing on their faith to their own children – those whom they love more than anyone else. Huh?
The research also shows that 83% of parents believe that they are the main spiritual influences on their children, but 48% (almost half) of them don’t consider their own faith as an important influence in their parenting. This means they recognize their influence, but don’t see their faith as a priority in parenting.
All this stuff got me to thinking. I’m gonna sit down with Miranda see if together we can write up a “basic” list of the things we want to instill in our children – I’m sure there will be more, but if we want to be successful, and we want to be intentional about what we consider to be the marks of a good parent, then writing it down certainly can’t hurt. Even if it’s an incomplete list, it’ll be better than nothing.
I just wanted to let everybody know about a new resource for small groups. Smallgroupexchange.com launched earlier this month and has tons of helpful materials. If you’re not too sure about something, they’ve got articles to help. There are also plenty of ideas and materials you can purchase (with reviews) to guide your study. They even have free training videos for small group leaders.
The smallgroupexchange folks have also asked me to do some writing/reviewing for their site. Wow! What an honor. You can check out my small group exchange bio here or one of my articles (What should we Study? & Leadership is Service). While you’re there, you should check out Heather Zempel’s articles. She’s a great writer and small group guru who has been a family friend to Miranda for her whole life. She’s quickly become my friend too. She also has a great blog called Wineskins for Discipleship.