Life-change

Happens in circles—not in rows. Growth comes as we persevere through struggles—not sermons.

GROUP EXPERIENCE VIDEOS & DISCUSSION GUIDES

Are you new?

Watch the Intro Video and the “First Five” Series for groups new to Spirit Farm. We provide a digital Discussion Guide that aligns with each video for a great conversation!

Want helpful leadership tips for group leaders, facilitators, and hosts?

Find your #Tribe

Look, all of us have had bad or mixed experiences in small groups, support groups, teams, or clubs. And yet, all of us recognize that loneliness and isolation will literally kill us. We need each other.  

 

Now, you can find friends all kinds of places—work, gym, club, online, church gatherings… But it’s critical to your health and growth to have at least of few people in your life who truly care about you at a deep level and have some sort of alignment with you regarding the things that matter most in life.

 

Local churches who form small groups can be great resources for helping you cultivate connections (as can other entities mentioned), but here’s the critical point: Own, don’t outsource, your spiritual growth. Your growth and your connection to God, others, and yourself is YOUR responsibility.

That means if the group from church is lame...

make it better or start a new group. If the book club is shallow, make it stronger or find new people. If the workout partners are gossiping, shut it down and find new partners.  

 

You know some other humans. You can meet new people. You have qualities in you that others are attracted to—so use them. Invite people into relationship and see what happens. 

 

Note: Remember, no one is perfect. Especially you. Ironically, it’s fighting through the imperfections and sticking together when we’d rather not that forms the bonds that last.  

 

You can call it what you want: 

  • small group
  • life group
  • interest group
  • workout club
  • dinner club
  • house church
  • tribe

 

Jesus said that whenever a couple of people are together who align with God, Jesus is there, too. (It’s an invisible Spirit of unity and mystery thing; let’s go with it.) This is why when churches get too “official”—too big to fail, too sure they are right—they go down a slippery slope of majoring on the minors. 

 

Spirit Farm will always encourage you to stay connected: to God, others, and yourself while keeping the main things the main things:  

 

Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ …‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.” —Jesus (Mark 12:30-31) 

 

In other words, love God by caring for and being yourself (being whole: body, mind, heart, soul), and by caring for others. 

 

And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another — and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
 Hebrews 10:24-25 

 

Then, the keys to building community (meaningful friendships) are to be encouraging and be consistent, as empathized in the verses above.  

 

Simple. (Not easy.) 

 

Don’t overthink this. Don’t get hung up with creeds and covenants. Don’t fall into the religious traps of developing hoops, hurdles, and handshakes as barriers to entry or expectations for involvement. Keep it simple.  

 

So, here’s how we invite you to think about organizing your “community”—your inner circle, or the people you’re doing life with… 

 

You can think of these as our VALUES:

 

  • Be encouraging.  
  • Be committed.  
  • Filter through love. 
  • Keep Jesus first.  

Be encouraging

Make it your aim that if anyone were to visit your group, leave your home, or hang out with your people, they would feel a clear sense of being loved, accepted, and encouraged. Everyone lives with an encouragement deficit. If Jesus arrival into the world was called "GOOD NEWS,” the world encountering the God in you (and in our conversations and communities) should reflect that encouraging, hopeful goodness. 

Be committed

Perhaps the greatest expression of love is time. Time is the non-renewable resource, so when we give it, we’re giving our lives away to the people we’re investing in. We can’t invest in everyone, but we invest in some—and allow them to invest in us. In our complex and overcommitted culture, rhythms of meetings can flex and shift in seasons, but commit to something (weekly, bi-weekly, monthly) and honor one another by sticking to it. 

Filter through love

Let love be your filter. Not the denomination your parents grew up in. Not the political persuasion with which you align. Do whatever you can to notice and remove the filters that divide and replace them with the lens of love. Every Old Testament commandment bows down to the Greatest Command: to LOVE. So should our doctrine, interpretations, biases, and philosophical convictions.  

 

“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.” —Jesus (John 13:34) 

 

So we keep asking ourselves: What does Love ask of us today? 

Keep Jesus first

Jesus said that (I paraphrase) "If you’ve seen me you’ve seen the Father; if you know me you know who God is, you hear what God’s saying, and you see what God’s doing.” Jesus is the visible expression of God. The Old Testament Hebrew Scriptures point forward to Jesus. The church epistles point backward to Jesus. And the gospel writers tried to capture his biography. If love is the filter, Jesus is our focus. When we’re interpreting scriptures, struggles, and situations, start with Jesus and look through love. You’ll find your way through the particulars.  

One more thing… 

We feel like this fits under the “be encouraging” header, but let’s drive it home anyway. Your group should be FUN!  

 

Jesus was famous for partying and hanging around people who had more fun than the conservative, religious establishment condoned. We’re not advocating drunken chaos, but we would say that it’s as much a sin to be boring! You only get one go at this life. Live it! This is the great adventure! We’re following Jesus as he continues to restore and redirect His confused creation. We’re on a love mission that should shock and inspire the people who witness it. Laughter, tears, and joy despite circumstance will flow from families, groups, and gatherings. After all, eternity has begun, growth is springing forth, and Jesus is alive.

DISCOVER FULFILLMENT

Don’t chase success only to discover it wasn’t what you'd hoped. Peace leads to purpose, to passion, to progress…then to your fullest potential.

Experience Peace

Peace is possible, and we can help you on that path. Peace means harmony, wholeness, connectedness… It can be well with your soul.

Find Direction

If you feel like you’re falling, flailing, failing, we can help. Your path is one decision away.