A spiritual family that lives on mission together
Six Elements of a Missional Community Group
1) Pray and listen to God together.
As a spiritual family, we should certainly be communicating with God and we should be doing it together. A big part of that is listening. In addition to asking God for things in prayer, we should be asking God where He is at work around us; what He wants to teach us and do among us; and listening for His voice. There should be both an individual and a collective nature to this.
2) Pursue Bible-saturated spiritual growth.
A part of following Jesus is growing in discipleship. We want to be taking spiritual steps forward both as individuals and as a Missional Community. We never want to stall, having good conversations about God but not putting things into action and growing in maturity. As we make spiritual growth a goal, spending time reading the Bible and discussing what God is saying through it should be a regular part of our rhythms.
3) Eat together.
Making community a goal does not usually end well. A group with that kind of goal usually winds up inward-focused and eventually implodes on itself. But there is one thing that naturally builds community that we can intentionally do, and that is eat together regularly. Everyone eats, and life is shared around the table, so eating becomes an easy invitation into the community and a natural place to develop both community and disciple-making relationships.
4) Bear each other’s burdens.
Part of being family is caring for each other, and one tangible way we do that is by bearing each other’s burdens. Some of our burdens are the trials of life, like death, losing a job, or problems in our marriage. Others are just the ordinary things of life like stress at work or home, work around the house, or moving. In all of these things, we care for each other enough to know what is going on, offer counsel or prayer, and offer to help when there is a need we can meet.
5) Choose a specific mission focus.
In order to most effectively accomplish the mission God has given us to make disciples, every Missional Community should choose a specific people or group to be on mission to. We all live and work in various places and we should look for ways to share the gospel story and make disciples there. However, as we move together as a Missional Community, having a focused area of mission provides intentionality, accountability, and support. This focus could be on a specific neighborhood, a school, a school organization (like band or football), the poverty-stricken, or foster families.
6) Invite others in.
Many people will not be open to the gospel story or to faith in Jesus at first hearing. Their unfamiliarity with it or their past experience makes them unready to believe. For many of these people, seeing what life in the Kingdom is like will be a major part of their journey. As we invite them into life in our Missional Communities, they will have an opportunity to see and hear what it means to follow Jesus and start picturing themselves that way.