All of us who lead LIFE Groups want our groups to be healthy, growing, and thriving in a way that glorifies God and builds His kingdom. Not a single one of us wants to stay stuck in the status quo. We want to flourish. But how often are we prayerfully seeking God’s direction for our group? Are we taking the time to envision what our group could look like in a year?
In his book, Visioneering, Andy Stanley says, “Vision is a clear mental picture of what could be, fueled by the conviction that it should be. Vision is a preferred future. A destination. Vision always stands in contrast to the world as it is. Vision demands change. It implies movement. But a vision requires someone to champion the cause.”
When I launched a group a few years ago, my initial vision was two-fold:
- I wanted the group to serve as a place where members would come together to study the Scriptures in a way that deepened their love for Christ.
- I wanted the group to provide an environment where group members could build authentic relationships with one another. God has been faithful to manifest this and more in our LIFE Group and I am thankful. But as I contemplate the future, I realize my vision for this group needs expanding.
For instance, in the coming months I long to see first-time guests coming through our door every week. I envision non-believers making decisions to follow Christ. My hope is to see current members step into leadership roles and launch their own groups. I want to see long-time group members continue to grow in their relationships with Christ and disciple new believers. My initial vision for the group hasn’t changed but it has expanded and I am now prayerfully seeking God for greater things in this group.
Maybe you’ve already got a solid vision for your LIFE Group and, if you do, that’s great. If not, I encourage you to spend some time thinking through what you want your group to look like in the coming months. Keep in mind that vision has to be communicated to be effective. In fact, it’s likely you will need to reiterate the vision several times. Sometimes members are absent and it’s possible not everyone will be present the first time you communicate your vision to the group. Others will need to hear it several times before they take it seriously.
As leaders, we have the privilege of influencing people to grow in their relationships with Christ. Let’s prayerfully seek God’s will for the people He allows us to lead and continue to expand our vision for what is possible.