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Posted by on Mar 5, 2012 in Small Group Resources |

John Ortberg Encourages Small-Group Leaders

John Ortberg Encourages Small-Group Leaders


As February ends, we’ve got a bit of cabin fever here at the offices of Christianity Today. We’re a little antsy, our attention spans are growing shorter, and we need something to keep us going. So I figured you might, too.

In our Fall 2010 digizine, interviews John Ortberg in an article called “No, You’re Not Crazy!” Ortberg shares his wisdom with small-group leaders, inspiring us to keep on. How do you feel that small groups as a whole have impacted the kingdom of God? What have they brought to churches, and to the Church?

Ortberg: I think it was Robert Wuthnow who said that the small-group movement is the biggest social revolution in America. In an era where people have become increasingly mobile, uprooted, and disconnected from family structures, I think small groups have become a huge vehicle for people to experience relationship, intimacy, and community. And in a lot of cases that comes to people who might not have it otherwise. If you had a chance to encourage a group of small-group leaders, what would you say?

Ortberg: I would say: “It’s worth it.” When I was at Willow Creek Community Church back in Chicago, a common message we delivered to people in ministry was, “You’re not crazy.” In those times when you think: Man, this is really hard. Nobody was talking tonight, or I’ve got a really difficult person in this group, or I’m feeling like I don’t know how to lead a discussion—you never know when God is going to use a moment, a session, or a connection with somebody else. You never know when a person is going to show up with a broken heart, and God’s going to choose you and your group to be a vessel of grace. You don’t carry the outcome on your shoulders. But when you show up and offer a devoted spirit—it’s worth it.

What do you do when you’re feeling discouraged? What quotations, Scripture, or reminders motivate you to keep on? Share with us below.

Be sure to check out all our past digizines, and look out for a new one coming this July.