Why doubling groups work at Northpoint and how they can work at your church

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I begin the Double Your Class seminar with two video clips. One of John Sprinkle of Indian Trail Baptist near Charlotte, NC. He did a presentation where he got the five people that started a Life Group with him on the stage.

He talked about how that group grew and eventually divided. Everyone who is in that group joins them on the stage. Then, those two groups divide again. . . next thing you know, five years later we have fifty people on the stage. Five to fifty in five years. . . and this is the Sunday night crowd. http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=84005950401

Then I show a video of Andy Stanley. I want to tap into the credibility of a well known pastor. He talks about they have reproduced time and again. He has a church that is less than fifteen years old and has more than 20,000 attending their various campuses.

I always know what pastors are thinking at this point. "I wish that would happen at my church."

I just downloaded Andy's book on community and he tells you why it is happening at his church and how it can happen at your church:

We are about to begin our eleventh group. We have two couples from our former group and three couples we met through our boys' involvement with baseball. Most of these new couples have been attending North Point Community Church for less than a year and cover the gamut in terms of spiritual maturity. Sandra and I can't wait to get started.

Whenever I talk to senior pastors about their small-group ministries, I always ask about their personal small-group experience. The majority of the time—and I mean the vast majority of the time—it turns out that the pastor is not actively participating in a group. At that point I say something rude. I think it is hypocritical for a pastor to champion something he isn't willing to participate in himself. -- Creating Community: Five Keys to Building a Small Group Culture (Andy Stanley and Bill Willits)

It is not just Northpoint. It is also true at Andy's neighbor church up the road a bit: Woodstock. Johnny Hunt attends Sunday School every week.

This gave Pastor Johnny an opportunity to attend Sunday School so he visited some Sunday School classes with the goal of joining one. (He did join one and is in Sunday School every week.) -- Sunday School in HD: Sharpening the Focus on What Makes Your Church Healthy (Allan Taylor)

It is true for John Sprinkle. He begins that video I mentioned by saying, "I knew if I wanted to build credibility, I had to be in a group myself."

Show me a pastor who stands before his people and says on a regular basis, "I am doubling, I want you to double" and I will show you a pastor of a church that is getting it done. 

 

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