Community Groups are small communities of six to twelve people meeting during the week. They are primary Christian communities, the first place Christians turn to for applying the gospel to their lives. They are also the heart of LFCC's pastoral care network. All groups are led by trained lay-leaders from the congregation who receive continued oversight and support.
A Community that Applies the Gospel to Our Lives
We need others to help us apply the truth about the Gospel to our daily lives. The implications of our life with Christ are broad, so broad that we rarely understand them by ourselves. As we remind one another about grace, we help each other open our lives to transformation according to God's purposes.
A Community that Cares for Each Other
We are told in Scripture to: encourage, serve, rejoice, weep with, correct, instruct, sing to, build up, accept and love one another. These commands are best followed in personal relationships. Community Groups also serve as a key way to keep LFCC's leadership aware of any pastoral concerns or troubles facing members of our congregation.
A Community Where Gifts Are Exercised
Community Groups are a place where spiritual gifts, including a vision for ministry and service, are discovered and developed. Group participants are encouraged not to merely consume, but rather to invest themselves in relationships with group members, supporting each other in Christ.
A Community that Witnesses to the Gospel
Community Groups are a place where people who are considering Christianity can discover who Jesus Christ is, in a environment of nurture and love. Christianity is seen as not merely doctrine, but a life-changing encounter with our risen Lord. Speaking the truth in love...the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work (Ephesians 4:15-16).
Living Faith Community Church is based on Community/Cell Groups because we are committed to several important biblical values:
- We believe that the Gospel creates a new community that loves and serves each other.
- We believe that the Gospel alone changes people's lives.
- We believe that this change occurs as Christians share their lives with one another in mutual encouragement.
The most important goal is to experience Jesus Christ so that lives are transformed by the Gospel. People should see regular changes in their life as they draw closer to Christ and are remade in his image. Healthy Community Groups contain the following five elements.
Opening Exercises and Worship
As the group gathers, we warm our hearts toward God and each other by re-establishing our relationships. Worship connects our hearts to God.
The group listens to God's word and applies the Gospel to everyday life. T he goal is not mere knowledge of Scripture, but to yield to its transforming power.
Fellowship with one another means to share with one another what we are learning about God and how He is working in our lives. It also means genuine concern for each other's overall well-being. This involves bearing one another's emotional and physical burdens along with holding each other accountable for spiritual growth.
Prayer is the means that God uses to change us and the world. Groups pray for one another and for God's kingdom advancement.
A mission to reach others is an overflow of the Gospel. Community Groups serve the world by sharing the Good News of Christ in word and deed.
While all five of these elements do not receive equal emphasis at any particular meeting, over a series of meetings a balance between these elements should be achieved. Some groups experience certain of these elements better than others.