Monday, September 08, 2008

The Year in Review: Life-Change Story #6

One of the first small group shepherds in our church-plant was Brad Hammack. Brad and his wife, Yvette, have a real love of hosting other people in their home. In fact, one of the first vision-casting meetings we had about family ministry was hosted in their back yard (I think this was the one where my oldest son peed on their fence while I was trying to wax eloquent about our passion to reach the city). Brad and Yvette had a strong small group from the time we started, leading one of the largest groups in our church.

Around launch time, I spend time challenging our shepherds to be prepared to multiply their groups so that we could be ready for the new families that God would send us. Brad took this challenge to heart, and he prepared Bob and Linda Goodfellow to step out and lead a new small group right after the launch of the church. The Goodfellow group started well and continues to this day. A few months later, with Brad's group continuing to grow and do well, Brad had the idea of multiplying his group again. This time, Brad tapped Dana and Carole Tucker to step out and lead a small group for the first time. In just a few months, the Hammack group had started two new small groups and developed two new couples into great small group leaders.

After he multiplied two small groups, Brad saw his own small group shrink in size and stay small for the next six months. But Brad never gave up and never threw in the towel. He stayed faithful to his ministry, and his group has begun to grow again. Most exciting of all, the Tucker small group has grown to the point where they are now multiplying their first small-group this summer. The Meese group has stepped out of the Tucker group and has stepped out in faith to start a neighborhood "seeker-group." It is exciting to see all of these couples step into leadership and grow in their trust in the Lord as He leads them to risk for Him.

As of this week, we now have 16 small groups. We launched a year ago with 7.

1 comment:

Elizabeth said...

Awesome! Very inspiring! Dad & I have really enjoyed reading these stories!
Love, Mama E.