As Christians, we are called to grow in both our love for God and in our love for each other. At Grand Avenue, we have found involvement in small groups to be one of the most effective ways to achieve this. Through Bible study, prayer, accountability and fellowship we encourage each other as disciples (followers) of Jesus Christ.
Small Group Vision: Discipleship through fellowship and hospitality.
Our vision for discipleship: The word disciple means to be a learner. When Jesus taught, He did not seek to simply impart information but instead to awaken a serious commitment to himself through the gospel. We desire a serious concern for gospel-growth among the members of our small groups. This means we are learning how to apply the person and work of our Savior in our lives.
We want our small groups to provide a predictable environment where participants experience spiritual growth and authentic community. We desire spiritual growth to enhance intimacy with God, to encourage Biblical life change, and to deepen our fellowship with one another. We desire biblical community that will provide a place for each of us to connect, to belong, to be shepherded and cared for, and for mutual accountability to be fostered.
Our vision for fellowship: To build healthy fellowship through gospel-centered relationships.
Koinonia is Greek for fellowship. The gospel creates Christian fellowship among God’s people. Koinonia is intimate spiritual communion and participative sharing of life in light of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Our vision for hospitality: To make room for strangers through gospel-growth
Philoxenia is Greek word for hospitality. It means for love of the stranger. One of the great works of the gospel is that it creates love for “the stranger” in the fellowship of God’s people.
What our Small Groups are not.
They are not “support” groups or “counseling” groups. Rather, they are used to cultivate spiritual fellowship where disciples grow together.
They are not “in-depth Bible studies” nor are they “in-depth doctrinal studies.” A small group may at times discuss some deeper biblical questions or discuss doctrinal questions as they arise out of natural spiritual conversation but the purpose of our small groups is not to primarily address those topics or issues as teaching goals. If this is what you seek, then a Foundations study, men’s or women’s small group, one-to-one discipleship, or leadership training is where these topics are taught.
What our Small Groups are.
Our small groups are fellowships informed by Scripture and pursued through prayer, study and interpersonal reflection on God’s word and seeking to show hospitality to the stranger. Small groups are where we strive to build relationships and learn how to apply the gospel to everyday life, to preach the gospel to one another, and pray for one another. We call this learning how to live life in light of the gospel.
What is the role of small groups at Grand?
The role of small groups will play a very essential part of the process of our spiritual growth. We desire to be a community of faith in which we surrender our lives to Christ and to each other. Small groups fill an important place in between the gathering of the full congregation in worship and the receiving of God’s Word, and those more intimate “one-on-one” relationships of discipleship.
Scripture calls us to not forget the assembling together for the purpose of encouraging one another. At these full congregational gatherings, we receive God’s Word, we participate in the ordinances of baptism and the Lord’s Table. We gather to “remember” and to draw our attention upward in praise and honor of our Lord Jesus Christ.
In small groups, we draw our attention horizontally to live out what it means to be called by, and identified with, Christ. We can only do this in the context of living “life-on-life.” We say to one another, “My life no longer belongs to just me. I give you the right to call me on things.” This is what it means to live within the community of the redeemed and to live life in light of the person and work of Jesus Christ.
A note on childcare — Each group provides childcare in different ways. Please speak with a small group leader about options. Our Kids Cash ministry is available to assist with the cost of childcare during Small Group meetings.
How Can I Join a Small Group?
There are a few ways to get plugged into a small group at Grand:
- The best way is to get started is to attend a small group with a friend at GABC.
- Sign-up through our on-line form below
- Contact our Pastor Michael Felkins