Home Groups are at the heart of City church. Make sure you get connected to one of the groups currently meeting. Make sure you stop by the Information table on a Sunday morning to get information about our Home Group leaders .
WHAT ARE HOME GROUPS?
A Home Group is a gospel community (family) that lives out the mission of God together in a specific area and to a particular people group by displaying and declaring the gospel to others (missionaries).Our HomeGroups are designed for discipleship, or forming people in the gospel.
DISCIPLESHIP IN HOME GROUPS: GOSPEL, COMMUNITY, MISSION
Home Groups are our primary avenue for discipleship. Disciple-making is prone to many misconceptions. Some people think discipleship happens in the classroom studying the Bible (Gospel), others think it happens by living together with Gods’ people (community), while other’s think it happens on the field obeying the commands of the Bible (mission). We think each of those views are deficient. We believe disciple-making requires all three (Gospel, Mission, and Community).
HOME GROUPS & GOSPEL
It’s good news, not just good advice. Good news can make all the difference in a person’s life. In a statement the Gospel is...
The just and gracious God of the universe looked upon hopelessly sinful people and sent his son, Jesus Christ, God in the flesh, to bear his wrath against sin on the cross and to show his power over sin in the resurrection so that all those who have faith in him will be reconciled to God forever (Romans 1-3).
That is the good news of the Gospel. God has made a way through Jesus for men and women to be reconciled to himself. We love how Tim Keller describes how the Gospel applies to the life of a Christian. "The gospel is not just the A-B-C of Christianity, it’s the A-Z. The gospel is not just the minimum required doctrine necessary to enter the kingdom, but the way we make all progress in the kingdom...It is the solution to each problem, the key to each closed door, the power through every barrier." The Gospel is foundational to our HomeGroups. It where everything begins. Through the Gospel God adopts us (giving us a people or community) and commissions us (giving us a purpose or mission). Our goal in a HomeGroup is to form men and women in this gospel.
HOME GROUPS & COMMUNITY
There is a groove in the heart of every human for authentic relationships. We have an intrinsic desire to be part of, and belong to, something; however, the suburban world in which most
Americans live is a great obstacle to this God-given desire. Home Groups are one of the primary ways we Hight against that obstacle.
Biblical community moves us beyond good friendships and a good support group. Biblical community is deep, authentic, gospel formed friendships. When you are walking in Biblical community it means you are completely known by a group of people. Moreover, Biblical community consistently reminds you of the Gospel, speaking the Gospel into your life as unbelief is exposed.
Biblical community is an affirmation that spiritual bloodlines run deeper and last longer than physical bloodlines. As God’s family we see it as our obligation to personally care for the needs of one another – both physically and spiritually. The gospel calls us to live life together, to pray for one another, to encourage, rebuke, exhort, cry, and laugh together (Acts 2:42-47). Home Groups provide the place for this sort of community to develop.
HOME GROUPS & MISSION
The mission of God is to redeem and save lost people through His Son, Jesus Christ, and Home Groups are also intended to be the primary expression of mission at CityChurch.
The Gospel calls, motivates, and moves us to participate in that mission. When God saves us from our sins, he also commissions us as missionaries of His Gospel (2 Corinthians 5:16-21). To be a Christian is to be a missionary, or someone living on the mission of God. Just like Jesus was sent into the world to show the world what God is like, so Christians are sent into the world to display the worth of God with their lives and declare the worth of God with their lips. To state that another way, missionary is a new gospel identity for a Christians. (John 20:21) Moreover, the more we embrace our gospel identity, the more we are moved toward our Gospel obligation (God’s mission in the world).
We live out our new identity by seeing our neighborhood, work place, restaurants, gyms, and other places we regularly attend as bridges that God has given to build relationships with unbelievers. The Gospel moves us toward build authentic relationships and keeps us from seeing people as projects. The Gospel moves us to love people enough to share our lives with, open our home, and to spend time with men and women far from God in hopes of seeing God redeem and rescue them. In short, the gospel is the foundation and motivation for mission.
In light of that, our HomeGroups are not just a place for people to get to know one another, they are also a place for people to get on the mission of God with one another. To state that another way, Home Groups are a provide the place for us to get on mission with this community.
Home Group FAQS
What about children (and child care)?
First, we want you to know that children are welcome. They are an important part of our faith family, and we want them to be at Home Groups. Child Care - There is some flexibility in how groups tackle child care. The age of the children will dictate how much they participate in the flow of the weekly meeting. It is important that children live in community with their parents. We want the other Home Groups members to know each others children.We also want our children to be on mission with their families. This is an important part of our discipleship and spiritual growth.
What to communicate to children before you bring them?
Children are a huge part of Home Groups. We love for them to participate. We have found that if children know what to expect, they are more apt to participate and behave well. So it is good to communicate to your children what will happen during your Home Group meeting such as:
- Eating a meal/snack together
- Reading and Discussing the Word Prayer
- Each group varies on how they handle the children, with the ages of children being a big determinant.
Do I need to be a member to attend a group? No. We welcome and encourage our guests to check out a Home Group. It would be a great way to get to know the City Church family.
If I am a member, do I have to attend a Home Group?
All members sign a membership covenant agreeing to be in a Home Group. We certainly understand that you cannot make every meeting; however, we want all of our members to Hight for consistency in your Home Group. We believe it will be one of the greatest blessings for your family.
Is a Home Group a Bible study?
Not primarily. It is primarily a community formed by the Gospel and sent out on mission. One aspect of our Home Groups is a time of studying God's word.
Where do Home Groups meet?
Home Groups meet in homes. Groups are encouraged to rotate homes so meetings can take place at different locations.
When do Home Groups meet?
Each Home Group will decide when to meet during the week. The church does not mandate any specific time for a group to meet. It is up to your Home Group to determine a night and time that works well for those involved.
Do I have a role if I am attending a group?
Yes! There are many things to be done for a Home Group to function well. Home Groups will need to delegate a variety of jobs such as food and drinks, hosting the Home Group, child care if necessary, worship, administrative work, etc. If you do not have a specific job, you are still encouraged to read and pray through the specific text so that you can participate in the discussion. If you want a role in your group, contact your leaders and discuss it with them.
Why Home Groups rather than a traditional Sunday School model?
This is just a brief answer as to why we do Home Groups. We think Home Groups are the most strategic and effective way to build the Kingdom through making disciples. That does not mean it is the only way, we just think it is the most effective. Discipleship or making disciples is what we are going after. We think that discipleship has three components. Picture a three legged stool. On one leg the word Gospel is written. On another the word Community, and on the last, Mission. If one of those legs is missing the stool falls over. The stool is not a stool if you can't sit on it. Discipleship is the same. If Gospel, Community or Mission is missing, discipleship is incomplete. We think Home Groups is the best way to make disciples.
We want the Gospel (good news of Jesus) to be talked about and applied to our lives... by our community (family) and shared with a lost and needy world on mission.
If you would like more information on Home Groups, please contact Heidi Mnkandhla at firstname.lastname@example.org