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When you think about discipleship in small groups what comes to mind? For many people it is Bible study, prayer, fellowship, worship…
Have you ever considered celebration as a necessary part of small group discipleship? Have you ever thought of celebration as a part of discipleship at all?
A regular rhythm of celebration exists in Scripture. And I believe God uses celebration to remind us of his faithfulness.
For example, I have a friend who is a Campus Pastor at our church. A number of years ago we were in a group praying and he said, “God, I don’t know what I did with my wallet, can you take care of that please?” Five minutes later, someone walked in with his wallet. They had found it on top of the gas pump at a gas station on the other side of town.
That is super cool that God answered his prayer before he even prayed it. However, when I asked him about the incident a few months later he commented, “Oh yeah, I forgot that ever happened.” Because he didn’t take time to celebrate.
Too often small groups get focused on the tangible spiritual disciplines, prayer, confession, study, evangelism and they neglect celebration.
Christmas is a regular celebration to remind us of just how much God loves us. And this season is a good reminder that the life of a disciple should have a regular rhythm of celebration. And celebration should be a regular rhythm of every small group.
Here is one free way to celebrate with your small group this Christmas.
Have every member of your small group bring a large rock with them to your next gathering.
First, have a discussion around all the festivals God set up to reminder his people to celebrate in Scripture to remind us of his faithfulness. Passover, which became communion. The feast of the tabernacles. Pentecost, which was a celebration established long before the gifting of the Holy Spirit. It is why the disciples were gathered in the upper room.
Second, read Joshua 3:14 – 4:7. Now ask each person in your group to write down something God did this past year that they want to be reminded of forever.
Third, have everyone read their rock and tell the story of God’s faithfulness.
Fourth, collect the rocks and bring them out every time your group gathers in 2020. Use them as a reminder that God was faithful in the past and he is going to do something in your small group this year that is worth celebrating.
For bonus points, four times in the next year reread the rocks and remind yourselves of God’s faithfulness.
Regardless of whether you use this example, finding a rhythm of celebration for your small group is important. Because without it, you may forget just how faithful your heavenly father is.
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