Leaders who rated themselves high on spiritual vibrancy were nearly three times more likely (182%) to have groups that were growing than those who rated themselves low in this area.
I conducted a follow-up survey of group members, asking them the same questions from their perspective. The difference was even more pronounced. Groups with leaders described by their own members as having a high spiritual vibrancy were 467% more likely to be growing.
What I mean by spiritual vibrancy is captured pretty early on in the Bible: “And you must love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength” (Deuteronomy 6:5). People who are spiritually vibrant are passionate. They’re on fire. They’re literally on a mission from God, and it shows.
Willow Creek defined it this way in their Reveal study: “Loving God and loving people.” That sounds almost like Jesus. That definition works for me.
This question, naturally, led to yet another follow-up survey. I asked: How can we help our groups become spiritually vibrant? What happens in a group that tends to produce spiritually vibrant people?
I’d like to highlight the four things that I discovered to have the strongest correlation to spiritual vibrancy:
- Feeling loved by the group predicts spiritual vibrancy.
- A positive atmosphere predicts spiritual vibrancy.
- Practical teaching predicts spiritual vibrancy.
- Strong agreement with the following statement predicts spiritual vibrancy: “It is always in my best interest to live the Christian life.”
Josh Hunt. Make Your Group Grow.