When I first entered the ministry, I dreamed of communicating God’s Word so powerfully that people would mull it over and discuss it during the week. I envisioned impassioned discussions of the deep theological truth I’d presented in the sermon.
I must have been smoking something.
If truth be known, for most of our congregation the frantic pace of a typical week quickly pushed Sunday’s sermon to the background.
The thought of sitting down and carefully reviewing what they’d heard at church never entered their mind. They were too busy.
Shoot, so was I!
But once we started tying our small group questions to the weekend message, everything changed. Nearly everyone took time to review their notes and think back over the message. And even if they rushed through the homework a half hour before the meeting or on the way to the meeting with a flashlight in their mouth, telling their spouse, “Slow down, honey,” I was still far ahead.
The stuff we’d talked about on Sunday morning was no longer buried in the recesses of their minds. For a few short hours it was once again front and center.
Better yet, they not only reviewed it; they also discussed it, and often with something close to the level of spirited dialogue I’d always dreamed of igniting.
Larry Osborne, Sticky Church (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2008).
If you would like help writing lessons for sermon-based groups, see https://www.joshhunt.com/2015/12/04/sermon-based-small-groups/