The concept of an alignment, or a church-wide campaign, (the combination of a weekend message series and a small group curriculum) is probably the most important spiritual growth development in the last hundred years. Preaching in series allows an idea to be fully developed. Adding the element of a small group study that complements the weekend teaching allows your members to be encouraged to find a group that’s using the curriculum that goes along with what we’re learning. That is a huge advantage! Why? Read on…
What most people need is a way to take a baby step in the right direction. You’re not asking them for a lifetime commitment. You’re only asking for a six-week commitment. Six weeks is short enough to encourage people to try it. It’s a reasonable commitment for most people. A month and a half. "I can do anything for six weeks." At the same time, six weeks is long enough to begin to establish connective tissue. It’s a great toe-in-the-water experience.
Be sure and give your new groups a study to do next in about their third or fourth week. Don’t wait until they finish the alignment. Begin to promote what’s next by week three or four because that’s when they’ll start talking about how quickly the six weeks is going by. You can begin to promote the next study two ways. First, have your senior pastor hold up a copy of the next curriculum and say something like, "Many of you have been asking what we’ll do after…" Second, be sure and put copies of the next curriculum at the small group table.