Note: This article is excerpted from Are You Engaging Everyone?
The goal of a small-group leader is for the people in your small group to see it as "our group." Good leaders proactively help make this happen.
God has gifted people in your group, so when you give them a way to use their gifts you not only share ownership, but also give them a way to serve in their sweet spot. That makes it a win for you as the leader and fruitful and fulfilling for the group members as they discover and use their spiritual gifts.
Here's a checklist of possible roles for group members. Consider whether you have someone already filling that role. If not, who might be a good fit?
___Apprentice leader: learning to be a small-group leader and takes on a portion of the meeting's discussion time
___Care caller: calls (or otherwise contacts) individual group members during the week to check in and pray for them
___Childcare champion: coordinates childcare for meetings (including finding babysitters and handling payment)
___Discipler: intentionally comes alongside another group member, regularly meeting with him or her for spiritual growth
___Greeter: arrives early for the sole purpose of greeting other group members when they arrive
___Host: holds the group meeting in his or her home—whether for a period of time or occasionally
___Icebreaker: leads the icebreaker question or activity for at least one meeting
___Leader's helper: pays attention to interactions in the meeting, noticing non-verbal cues and body language that the leader may miss while leading the meeting and debriefs with the leader afterward
___Missional champion: oversees, plans, or delegates the group's missional activities
___Prayer warrior: keeps track of shared prayer requests and personally prays for each group member during the week
___Snack helper: provides a snack for at least one meeting
___Social champion: oversees, plans, or delegates the group's social events
___Worship leader: leads the worship portion of your meeting—whether the group sings, prays, or incorporates other forms of worship
For leaders who tend to do it all themselves, here are a few more questions to consider:
If you couldn't be at your group this week, would it still meet?
When there is a need in your group, who—besides you—can meet it?
When was the last time someone else prayed during your meeting?
Do group members feel free to invite others, or do they depend on you to do that?
Do you model openness and authenticity, inviting others to be open and authentic?
—Jay Firebaugh is the Director of Small Groups at New Life Church in Gahanna, Ohio; copyright 2012 by Christianity Today.