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Im writing this the morning after an AMAZING Sunday at the Summit Church. My wife and I were talking on the way home yesterday and this is how Courtney summed up her response to the message: “I wanted to start cheering I was so excited.” She and I are still breaking free of the traditional baptist chains that keep us from cheering during a sermon. Dont worry, we raise our hands in worship and I’ve even dropped a “PREACH IT” or two during a sermon lately.

Anyways, we were so excited because yesterday kicked off the “Believe” series at the Summit Church. Since we have a great team of bloggers here on staff, I am going to speak specifically to how this will play out in small groups while referring you to some other blogs for the rest of the picture. For a great big picture recap: Danny Franks; For follow-up from the lead pastor: J.D. Greear; For the implications for Middle & High School Students: Jason Gaston.

How can a SummitLIFE group carry the momentum of this mission expansion project? A better way to say that is in statement form: we are counting on our SummitLIFE groups to carry the momentum of this mission expansion project. Here are some ways we have equipped our small group to do that (I think the ideas here could be helpful for anytime we are trying to bring unity around the vision of the church):

  • Pre-Printed Discussion Guide for the entire 5 week series: Usually we publish a sermon discussion guide on Friday for the sermon coming that Sunday. By publishing all 5 in advance, we are giving group leaders time to read ahead, to plan and prepare for a whole series instead of just a week, and we are giving their group members an opportunity to get “in” on what is coming each Sunday. Ideally, people are reading the discussion guides now before they ever come to the service and the sermon becomes a way to process what they are reading instead of a “surprise” each week. Also, the discussion guide is available under the sermon discussion guide tab found above.
  • Day of Hope: February 15th is being called the Day of Hope in this series. We are going to give people “the coats off our backs and the food off our tables” to quote our lead pastor from yesterday. This will be an opportunity for small groups to experience the joy in practicing sacrificial generosity. This day will rise and fall  on the buy in from SummitLIFE groups. So I challenge you group leader, make this a “half-way marker” in your group this month.
  • 1,000 Hours of Prayer: You have the chance to challenge someone in your group to pray for an hour as a part of a church-wide effort to blanket this mission expansion project in prayer. You also have daily prayer guides your people can use to create a daily time with God for maybe the first time ever. DONT MISS THAT OPPORTUNITY FOR DISCIPLESHIP! Agree to read it together throughout the month if that will help. To sign up for a time-slot in the 1,000 hours of prayer, visit summitbelieve.com.

These are the tangible things we have done here at the Summit to resource our groups to make the most of our time in this mission expansion project. Truthfully though, it is up to our SummitLIFE groups to do this or not. Why put so much emphasis on our SummitLIFE groups “buying in?” Because 1/3 of our church is in a SummitLIFE group right now. Likely the most committed 1/3. If that 1/3 sits by and watches, our church will have passed on what could be one of the greatest collective spiritual growth moments in our young history.

  1. Lori Smoot
    February 7, 2009 at 12:35 am

    Thank you Spence, for this. I needed to hear it.

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