When people ask me how we grew our small group ministry from zero small groups to a solid 19, I plainly answer, "You just have to pray."
In some ways, I hate to give this advice to another pastor who is as desperate as I used to be. What senior pastor doesn't pray for his church's small group ministry? But I know it is only through prayer that our ministry grew.
Prayer gives you contact with the chief administrator of small groups who is in heaven. He looks down and opens your eyes to those people who need to lead your small group ministry. I've learned that the leaders were always there, even when I didn't recognize them as leaders. They don't just magically appear, though; you need to pray for your eyes to be opened and the obedience to let them lead.
All of our coaches have always been with us. My wife was one of them. I always knew she was a great leader, but I never saw her as a person who would be great at helping lead this small group ministry. Prayer opened my eyes to her.
Through prayer, God also opened my eyes to Valerie. Valerie was quiet as a mouse. An introvert, she never volunteered much information about herself.I never imagined that she would be a small group host, but now she is. She gladly calls people, makes connections with them, and loves evangelism. I still think, Valerie?Evangelism?But that's what she loves, and we let her do it.
We still need a small group administrator. My instinct is to believe this person doesn't exist in our church, but he or she probably does. I'm still blind and pray that God will open my eyes to that leader.
God will surprise you when you're open to using the talents within your church. When you take off the glasses you're wearing and look with a new set of lenses, you'll discover that the people in your midst have the talent to make your small group flourish.