Creating an agenda for a small group meeting is easy. Most of the small groups I've been involved with had these elements: worship, prayer, study and fellowship. Ah, but creating an agenda that encouraged life change? I've been in some groups where I grew by leaps and bounds. Others have been ho hum. What created the environment for life change?
One summer job I had was selling Cutco knives. I had the sales agenda down, but was a horrible salesman. Another student had a random, disorganized, unpolished presentation. He was the top in sales. Why? He loved Cutco knives. He believed in Cutco knives. He was able to get others to share his passion. Leaders who love and believe in others are the key to creating meetings where growth takes place.
Ho hum meetings are characterized by serving the 'agenda.' The bases are covered, but members don't connect with God or each other. Great leaders serve people, not an agenda. Their meetings may look somewhat random, disorganized and unpolished. They may not even get all the agenda items covered! But change is regularly occurring in these meetings.
I've mentored leaders like the successful Cutco salesman. Here's one member's experience with leaders like this. "I can't really think of a particular meeting that was any more meaningful than another. I did appreciate the fact that all the people in our group were a lot older than us and they approved of and encouraged the way we are raising our children. I really have grown to feel like the Vogel's home is a safe haven for me. That started with the small group, but just developed into a feeling of having someplace to go when I need acceptance and comfort. If everybody could have leaders like them the world would be a better place." This happened ...