Craig Groeschel once said: “If you want to reach people no one else is reaching, you have to do things no one else is doing.” Translation: If you keep doing what you’ve always done, you’ll keep reaching who you’ve always reached.
I like to modify that phrase to say, "If you want to connect people no one else is connecting, you need to do things no one else is doing." Translation: If you keep doing what you’ve always done, you’ll keep connecting who you’ve always connected and making the number and the quality of disciples you have always connected and made.
I modify the statement because we are in the business of connecting more people and making more and better disciples.
What Is the Next New Way to Connect More People or Make Better Disciples?
I'm always on the lookout for the next new way to connect more people or make better disciples.
I believe the optimal environment for life-change is a small group. Granted, certain things must be true for that statement to be true, but I still believe life-change happens in circles, not in rows.
I also believe it is possible to connect more people in groups than we have attending our weekend worship services. And it is possible for you too. Again, certain things must be true for that to happen, but I have seen it happen other places and I believe it can happen here (and where you are too).
Four innovations that have been game-changers:
I know certain innovations have already made it possible to connect more people and make more and better disciples. For example, here are four innovations that have been game-changers:
- Lyman Coleman's work at Serendipity made it easier for less-experienced Bible readers/learners to talk about what a passage of scripture meant to them and how to apply it.
- The creation of VHS content (then DVD and now streaming) made it easier for non-teachers to lead groups and connect people.
- Saddleback's Small Group Connection strategy made it possible to start new groups and leverage to group members' ability to choose their leader from amongst themselves (taking advantage of the idea that there is a "relative" shepherd in every group of 10).
- Saddleback's HOST strategy (and now the "If you have a couple friends" strategy) made it possible for groups to start with just a little hospitality, a few invitations and a VCR (or DVD player or Apple TV, etc.).
- Saddleback's Church-Wide Campaign strategy (i.e., 40 Days of Purpose, etc.) made it possible for the most influential person in almost every congregation (i.e., the senior pastor) to challenge whole congregations to be part of a group that is using the study that goes along with the weekend messages.
My question for you today, is what are you testing to connect more people or make more and better disciples?
Are you testing something that you'd like to share with us? It doesn't have to be tested to be sharable. It can be something that you suspect will make a difference and you're about to try it.
Do you have an idea to share? What are you testing? You can click here to jump into the conversation.
Image by Steven Lilly