DNA of a LifeGroup Leader

Last weekend at Mavuno Church, we had a training session for our new LifeGroup leaders. LifeGroups are small gathering of congregation members that meet weekly right across the city of Nairobi in homes having fellowship, sharing in a meal, discussing the weekend’s sermon and helping each other to apply life changing principles.

Before jumping into what a LifeGroup Leader should do, we asked what a LifeGroup Leader should be. A LifeGroup (LG) is only as strong as the person who leads it. This is because the members of a LG will follow the example of their group leader. If the leader is growing spiritually, the group will be more apt to grow spiritually. We looked at the primary role of a small group leader from 1 Peter 5:1-11 and our take out was that the LG Leader is to be a shepherd.

(1 Peter 5:2 – ‘be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care, serving as overseers). The big idea was that the leaders are to provide care and guidance for those who are under their leadership. God himself provides the primary example of how leaders are to act as shepherds for the people in the LG through Psalms 23. We took note that the primary emphasis was more psychological and spiritual needs rather physical needs ie quiet place of rest away from the rush of life (vs2) and comfort, guidance and encouragement through difficult times of life (vs 4).

We then looked at seven principles that the LG leaders need to know and practise so as to grow in the discipline of being effective shepherd for their small groups.

  1. The LG leader must be motivated by a sense of opportunity rather than by obligation. According to vs 2, the shepherd serves because he or she is willing, not because he or she must. They should not feel obligated to another person regarded as spiritual authority for them to serve.
  2. The LG leader must be ‘eager to serve’. This desire is what distinguishes Christian leaders from leaders in the corporate or political arena. Here they lead by taking care of need whereas in the world, leadership takes places by control and manipulation.
  3. The LG leader must lead by example. According to vs3, leaders are to be examples to the flock placed under their care rather than “lording it over” them. This means that rather than telling people what to do, the LG leaders must show people what to do.
  4. The LG leader must be humble. Vs 5-6 admonishes young men  to’ be submissive to those who are older’  and to ‘Clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because ‘God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble’. The LG leader must be willing to submit to God’s authority and to treat other people with respect.
  5. The LG leader  must entrust difficulties encountered while serving in the ministry to God.  Since leaders are bound to run into difficulties, in such times there will be a strong tendency to take all of the pressure upon self and to try to deal with the difficult situations alone. But the scripture in vs 7 exhorted the leaders to learn to turn to God for guidance and strength rather than attempting to deal with the situation alone.
  6. The LG leader must be prepared for spiritual battle. When faced with difficulties, temptations and opposition from Satan, the LG leader can trust completely in Christ. Only Jesus Christ has the power to defeat Satan. Vs 8-9 encourages to resist the devil and stand firm in the faith.
  7. The LG leader must rely on God for strength. Even though the leader has a prayer partner, or the group’s support, there are many times when only God himself can provide the spiritual strength needed to successful lead the LifeGroup. Vs 10-11 reminds us God’s power is eternal.

As U serve God’s people this month, may the Father create in you a shepherd’s heart.

Pst Toni Mungai

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One response to this post.

  1. great information, thanks. hope you write some more posts soon.

    Reply

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