- Is your senior pastor more "go with the flow" or more "I want to know every detail"?
- What do you desire more: A faster growing small-group ministry or highly trained small-group leaders? Which does your senior leadership prefer?
- Is your church better equipped to handle the problems associated with growth or control?
3. What is your vision for discipleship?
- How do you know someone is a disciple in your context?
- What is your mental picture of an ideal leader in your context?
- How realistic is that mental picture? Are you asking too much of people? Are you asking too little?
- How do you envision reproducing leaders and disciples? What systems, strategies, and models will help you best reproduce?
When you look at successful small-group ministries, you'll find that each of them is unique. They may have similarities, but each church's model has been custom built to fit their DNA. One of the greatest temptations of small-group ministry leaders is simply to take another church's model and insert it into their context. Resist that temptation! Do the hard work of understanding your church's DNA. Be committed to leading your ministry diligently. Then, and only then, will you be ready to discern between appropriate models.
—Alan Danielson is the Senior Pastor of New Life Bible Church in Norman, Oklahoma, and a small-group consultant; copyright 2014 by Christianity Today.