Have a game night. Instead of the usual study time, surprise the group with a night full of games and fun. Choose interactive games that are simple and fun such as Charades or Pictionary. Pit the women against the men if you have a couples group. It will definitely be a night that you will long remember.

The passing year. As the end of a year approaches, take a few moments at the end or beginning of a meeting and ask group members to spend some time thinking about how they would finish the following sentence: During the last year, my favorite group memory is. . . .

New Year’s resolutions. Sometime in January have group members make a commitment to a spiritual resolution. The New Year is a great time for everyone to take the Spiritual Health Assessment (available at www.smallgroups.net/store) and determine what each individual would like to accomplish during the next year to strengthen his or her spiritual walk—perhaps spend more time reading the Bible, make group attendance a priority, read one classic Christian book per month, and so forth. Have members be specific and then follow up with each other during the year to check their progress on those spiritual goals. Then also determine what you would like to accomplish together as a group.

Dinner for two. Instead of your regular meeting, on meeting night have same-sex group members pair up for dinner. Be sure to go to different restaurants or you will end up sitting with each other. At your next meeting, ask group members to tell where they went and what they ate and to share their favorite story of the night. This is a great way to deepen relationships between members and add a little spontaneity in the group.

Make a surprise visit to another group. Find out where and when some of the other small groups from your church are meeting and then surprise one of them with a quick visit. Bring cookies or snacks, offer to pray for their group, and then be on your way. This is a fun way to show love and appreciation to another small group.

Leading Small Groups with Purpose: Everything You Need to Lead a Healthy Group by Steve Gladen