Author Archive for David Ludwig

Not Just for Church Members

welcomebricksWHY THIS IS IMPORTANT? Do first time guests show up for Sunday School? Maybe they don’t know they’re invited?  Do your church website, Facebook page, and other publicity unintentionally imply that Sunday School is for “Members Only?”  Sunday School and adult groups are for everyone, but if you’re a new believer or didn’t grow up in church this might not be known or understood.

Sunday School, Life Groups, or whatever you call them, are the place where discipleship begins.  The setting should be an open group (anyone is invited to join at any time) with a stand-alone lesson every week.  This is different than an accountability group or a deeper learning discipleship class where one larger topic is explored often over the course of 8-12 weeks or more.

WHAT DO I DO? Because Sunday School has this format, people need to know that you don’t have to be a member to join.  Even if that is obvious by your church sign, website and other publicity, make sure that your group members know to communicate that to their friends and neighbors.

It’s been said many times, people aren’t looking for a friendly church, they are looking for friends!  What better place to find friends than in the Sunday School groups!  Make sure your class is a place where people who are looking for friends can find them, even before they become a member.

Invite and expect friends, relatives, associates, and neighbors. Greet them warmly. Connect with them in and beyond group time. Add them to the group care list.

Mission Projects for Your Group

commhelpWHY IS THIS IMPORTANT? Groups have a tendency to become inwardly focused, and to prevent that it is important that we stay focused on the mission.  Jesus said to the disciples, “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” Matthew 5:14-16 (ESV)

We know the importance of studying the Bible together, praying for one another and fellowship, but we must never let the group forget our mission: to be a light and tell others about the Good News of Jesus! (Matthew 28:19-20).

WHAT DO I DO? Meet together as a group and decide what you want to do, and then begin to make plans. Here are a few ideas for group mission projects:

  • Help neighbors with some work around their homes.
  • Clean up a neighborhood park.
  • Have a Backyard Bible Club.
  • Volunteer at a local shelter or soup kitchen.
  • Work with a local school.

Jesus said we are to let our light shine, and we do that by being out in the community and serving others. Be the light that shines for Jesus!