Thursday, December 11, 2008


Small Groups -- Bang for your Buck

I am the business administrator for our little church. I love and hate the job.

I love it because I see opportunities to do things better and smarter, and I've found a way to use certain gifts to make an impact. I also love the people! Truly, this has been a wonderful church for us all around, and so on balance I must say I'm happy to administrate.

Still, part of me hates the position because I see how much of our corporate energy is spent taking care of things that really don't matter very much. Aside from just the business processes of the church (advertising, finances, legal issues, meetings, etc.), I'm thinking of the production side of preparing and stage-managing our church services. I get a close-up view of the effort that goes into putting on a good "show". Forgive me for the cynicism, but often it really feels like that. It's discouraging to see how much of our time can be spent on such things -- essentially "Martha" time when "Mary" time is what's important. And we're just a small church ...

This is where small groups really stand out to me--they're such efficient uses of our energy. The preparation that goes into them is very mild in comparison--and often focused on more important matters, such as time in the Word and prayer. Moreover, the soul-work tends to be so much deeper and more lasting; the encouragement is almost always more effective and permanent; and we are able to shed our over-reliance on worldly methods to achieve eternal goals.

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