At re:group on Aug. 1, 2021, we shared about some significant changes in our approach the group life at PV. Here’s a summary of those changes….
SAME MISSION, DIFFERENT STRATEGY
The mission of group life at PV is to create biblical communities where truth and authentic relationships are the catalyst for life-change.
For 12+ years we’ve had primarily one environment for accomplishing this strategy–Community Groups. But we sense to better accomplish our mission and align with our Vision Priority of Making Disciples, we need another environment–Discipleship Groups.
A Discipleship Group is a gender-specific group of 3-5 men or women who commit to grow together for 12 months for the purpose of multiplication, accountability, and accelerated spiritual transformation. Participants are invited by the leader, and begin with a group agreement outlining the expectations for participation and replication at the end of the group. The intent at the conclusion of the 12 months is for every member to replicate the group by inviting 3 – 5 others to take the same discipleship journey with them.
Group members follow a daily Bible reading plan and journal as they go. They meet weekly to discuss their progress, memorize scripture together, pray and foster accountability with battling sin and in areas of spiritual discipline.
- Scripture Memory
- Daily Bible Reading
- Journaling (H.E.A.R. Method)
- Accountability (personal obedience, evangelism, multiplication)
The leader of the group is also a full participant, sharing HEAR journals and being accountable just like everyone else. Who should be invited to participate in a Discipleship Group?
Learn more about Discipleship Groups in the Starter Guide, available here.
Group Life = 2 Complimentary Environments
Community Groups are still the first step in the process of growing in community. Our goal is to see every person who calls PV home is connected in a Community Group. The Discipleship Group becomes the next step of opportunity for further growth of those in a Community Group.
The illustration below compares Community Groups and Discipleship Groups…
Community Group Changes
Same Values, Worded Differently
The Core Values of Community Groups are summed up in three words: BELONG, BELIEVE, and BECOME. These values serve as the “plumb-line” or filter, against which everything we do in group life should be evaluated.
A place where you can meet Jesus in a group where you are welcomed and accepted.
A place where you can know Jesus through His Word and His people.
A place where you can follow Jesus as you become who God designed you to be.
As a part of the BELONG value, Community Groups should seek to be open to anyone at any time, and create an environment where everyone is welcomed and accepted. That’s not to say there are not times or seasons that may not be ideal for new people to join, but in general, the members of group understand the group is open to new people and regularly ask, “Who in my life would benefit from a group like this?”
Regular social activities (monthly or bi-monthly) are an ideal opportunity to invite our friends to a easy first experience with your group. To help our group members be intentional on inviting new people into the group, we also regularly ask : “Who’s Your One?” Who is the one person in your life that doesn’t know Jesus who you are actively seeking to B.L.E.S.S.?