At the heart of worship is surrender, and small groups can help their members live out being a living sacrifice. We are told in the book of Romans: “Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God-this is your spiritual act of worship.”
Small groups encourage transparency among members as they receive the support they need to succeed in the Christian walk. This increased transparency provides the fertile ground for worship to happen. Incorporating Worship into your small group meetings gives your group members a chance to pause, be still and experience God.
Worship in small groups can be both expressive and reflective. Expressive worship is done verbally through song, prayer or words. Reflective worship is done in silence and reflects upon God’s presence in your life. Either or both forms of worship can be a part of your group’s time together.
Depending on how long your group has been meeting, you will want to add Worship into your group throughout the year in ways that are comfortable for your members.
If your group members are just getting to know each other, you can incorporate Worship in the following ways:
- Have each group member find a favorite verse about God’s love and read it to the group
- Have someone slowly read Psalms 23, emphasizing the pronouns. Encourage members to close their eyes and picture the images of the verses.
- Read or sing the words to “Amazing Grace”. Ask members which verse means the most to them.
- Make a list of truths about God’s character. Spend time praising Him.
As your group becomes more comfortable together, you can:
- Let each Group member say one sentence of thanks to God for something specific in their life. This lets the group see positive things are happening and reminds them that no matter how hard their day or week has been, there are always things to thank God for.
- Keep a prayer journal for the group. Write down prayer requests AND how God has answered those prayers. Periodically remind the group of the answered prayers.
- On a clear night, meet outside and read Psalms 19:1-2. Give members time for silent reflection.
- Have a group member to bring a song to read or sing. Before doing that, tell the backstory – the circumstances that made the writer pen those words.
Once your group has been up and running for a while, you may want to try these ideas:
- Plan a nature walk and praise God for the beauty around you.
- Sentence prayers. To make group prayer easier, ask each member that is willing to only pray one sentence. A simple “thank you” is fine.
- Ask each member write 1-2 prayer requests on an index card. Pass it to the 3rd person on their left. Pray together these requests in the group, and/or have each member pray them during the week.
- Read Psalms 13 aloud to the group. Ask members to share times in their lives when God has seemed silent or distant.
Other Ideas to Consider:
- Even though 2020 has been a hard year for all of us, God has still blessed us. Spend time telling each other of blessings you saw during the year. End with a prayer of thanksgiving.
- Share communion together with your small group. Whether you are in person or online, it can be a special time for your group. You can pick up communion supplies outside the office door at church. Or one of your members can make communion bread for your group. The recipe is in our 50th Anniversary cookbook (pg 273) and posted below.
- Have a group member track prayer requests using a notebook or Google Doc, shared the link, and regularly give updates on how God has answered past prayers.