2015 was a great year for small group ministries. Many churches are beginning to embrace the small group path of discipleship while those with existing small group ministries saw them flourish. 2016 is shaping up to be another breakthrough year, both for small group ministries and the people who comprise them.
Because of the growing popularity of this type of ministry, there are many books for small group leaders. Here are five of our favorites.
1. Leading from the Heart: A Small Group Leader’s Guide to a Passionate Ministry
If you, or your small group, need an infusion of the Spirit, this book is a great place to catch that spark. A passionate leader often sets the right stage for a passionate ministry. However, it is not just for small group leaders who are struggling to find passions. Michael C. Mack’s reflections on small group and bible study ministries are helpful even to people with inspiration and enthusiasm to spare.
2. Simple Small Groups
Leading small groups can often become a more complicated task than it has to be. This book, written by Bill Search, advocates for getting back to basics while offering concrete tools. Not only is a simple ministry easier to run, but it also can be more fulfilling to both leaders and members because the focus is always clear. If your church small groups are becoming a complicated undertaking, this is likely the book you need.
3. Life Together: The Classic Exploration of Christian in Community
This author, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, attended an illegal seminary in Nazi Germany. This led him to appreciate the sense of community that came from a shared goal and shared secret while giving him valuable experience of being in a close-knit community. Many of these lessons can be applied to small groups in the modern day. This is a great book for people who feel a hunger for the fellowship of their brothers and sisters I Christ.
4. The Big Book on Small Groups
If you need a primer that has information on every aspect of small groups, from inspiration to logistics, this book might be for you. Written by Jeffrey Arnold, this book has a great deal of practical advice as well as thoughts on the reason for small groups and the expected goals. This book may be more suited to a beginner, but even veteran leaders can glean some useful information.
5. The Seven Deadly Sins of Small Group Leadership: A Troubleshooting Guide for Church Leaders
Written by small group veterans Bill Donahue and Russ Robinson, this short and sweet book looks at the mistakes that small group leaders make most often and offer practical tips for avoiding them. This is a great book to give new leaders in your community before they try their wings.
These are great books not just for small group leaders, but for the members who hopefully will someday lead small groups of their own. If you want to encourage a heart for leadership in members of your bible study, consider giving them one of these excellent small group books and discussing them on a platform such as StudyChurch. Many people feel that leadership is difficult or even unattainable, but books such as this are showing that anyone who feels called can minister to others.