Last night our Junior High Ministry had their “meet and greet” for the first night of small groups for this school year. I have several friends who lead junior high groups and as I walked through the meet and greet and talked to them I noticed one recurring theme. Everyone told me how “recharged” they were and “excited” to start the new year. I heard those words so many times it was either rehearsed by all of them or it was just the theme of the night. Then this morning, without me even saying anything to Steven about what I noticed last night I noticed a Facebook post he had on his page:
“The Life Group meet & greet tonight got me EVEN MORE excited for Life Group than I already was. Great group of guys this year. So thankful!”
It’s great to start the year this way, but I always caution myself to keep that level of enthusiasm up. Remember we are all in this for the long haul. When your small group gets messy with problems and with Satan throwing spiritual warfare at you, remember the excitement you felt on this first night. Let this be one of those things that keep you going during the tough times.
This will be my third student small group that I’m leading and one thing I’ve found out through this process is that student small groups are not always just fun and exciting. If you’re doing a small group right then you have students opening up to you about their lives and things that need to change and those things are not always pleasant.
My advice to you new leaders is to keep this memory of the first night in mind, remember why you became a small group leader and keep pushing and plugging along during the tough times. The reward for students and for you is huge and so worth it.
My “meet and greet” for my new small group year is tonight and yes, I’ve very excited to meet my new students!