SMALL GROUPS

Join a small group of friends that meet throughout the week.

Small Groups have one simple purpose: bring people together. We believe that spending time together is where you will Find Freedom in relationship. We offer warm, friendly groups to encourage you on your journey in faith. Some meet at homes, some meet at the church, but all exist to pursue spiritual growth through Christ-centered community.


We encourage you to join a group!

Small Group Participant Guide: Winter 2021

The following is the outline for Sermon-Based Small Groups this winter. There will be four aspects to them:


  1. Sermon Discussion
  2. The winter semester will be occurring during three sermon series at the church. It will be starting with the Jonah series and then move into two 4-week series on the book of Mark.
  3. 50% of the 12-week semester (6 weeks) will be devoted to extended sermon discussions.
  4. The questions to guide the Extended Sermon Discussions will be sent out during the week prior to each discussion.
  5. Spiritual Practice: Scripture
  6. We want your small group to be a place to explore spiritual practices and this semester the focus will be on scripture.
  7. We will spend 25% of the 12 weeks (3 weeks) devoted to a discussion of our scripture “consumption” habits, asking questions like: How often do you read the Bible? What do you prefer to do: read, study, listen, etc? What have been your difficulties with scripture? What questions do you have about studying the Bible?
  8. In addition to the 3 weeks devoted to scripture reading, we will touch base throughout the semester on how everyone is growing in their prayer life.
  9. Each week will include 3-5 minutes of corporate prayer.
  10. Reading Together
  11. In addition to sermon discussions, spiritual practices and scripture, we want to grow in resources that help us understand how to follow Jesus. Each small group will read one book throughout the course of the semester and discuss it at 2 of the 12 weeks.
  12. We will provide a list of books related to the sermon series happening during the semester, and each leader can decide (with the assistance of their small group members) which book they would like to read together.
  13. There will be one discussion on the book mid-way through the semester and one discussion on the book in its entirety the last meeting of the semester. Groups will be encouraged to have dinner together to discuss the book and their spiritual growth throughout the semester at the last meeting.
  14. FUN
  15. The week of February 28th, do something fun! Have a zoom game, or a zoom meal, or go for a walk together outside, or if restrictions are loosened at that point, get together for a meal. Enjoy being with one another and having fun.
  16. There will be a brief icebreaker to start each week.






Fall Semester Outline

Denotes “Jonah” Series

Denotes “Mark I” Series

Denotes “Mark II” Series



Week of Jan. 10 (Jonah - Week 1)

  • 3-5 minute community prayer and silence
  • The Bible Project Video: Jonah Overview
  • Sermon reflection
  • Spiritual Practice: Scripture - Session 1
  • What was your relationship with scripture and reading the Bible like growing up?
  • What’s your favorite book of the Bible?
  • Do you have a favorite verse or one you return to most often?
  • What aspect of reading / studying scripture is difficult for you? (reading consistently, getting a lot out of reading, stories you find problematic, etc.)
  • Pastor Brian mentioned 5 shortcuts to reading the Bible last Sunday:
  • Inkblot (see what you want to see)
  • Bite-sized rules (miscellaneous rules for morality)
  • Bite-sized blessings (miscellaneous encouragements)
  • Teachers to sit under (viewing Bible characters as heroes)
  • A Puzzle to solve (The Bible can be mastered with a good system)

Which of these do you find yourself doing most often?

  • How is “Reading the Bible as one unified story, both human and divine, that leads to Jesus” different from how you have been reading the Bible?
  • How can you expand your scripture consumption? (Start reading books on different books of the Bible, start a podcast series, etc.)
  • List of Bible reading plans (pag.life)
  • 1 minute Prayer of Blessing (Benediction) by the Small Group Leader



Week of Jan. 17 (Jonah - Week 2)

  • 3-5 minute community prayer and silence
  • Extended Sermon Discussion
  • Practice check-in and reflection
  • Discuss list of books for the semester and decide by next week as a group which one book to read.
  • 1 minute Prayer of Blessing (Benediction) by the Small Group Leader



Week of Jan. 24 (Jonah - Week 3)

  • 3-5 minute community prayer and silence
  • Extended Sermon Discussion
  • Practice check-in and reflection
  • Final decision on book and commitment to read it by week of March 28th (with a mid-way discussion the week of Feb. 21.
  • 1 minute Prayer of Blessing (Benediction) by the Small Group Leader


Week of Jan. 31 (Jonah - Week 4)

  • 3-5 minute community prayer and silence
  • Extended Sermon Discussion 
  • Discussion on the Jonah series as a whole
  • Practice check-in and reflection
  • 1 minute Prayer of Blessing (Benediction) by the Small Group Leader




Week of Feb. 7 (One-Off - Fasting)

  • 3-5 minute community prayer and silence
  • Reflection on Sermon
  • The Bible Project Video: Mark Overview
  • Spiritual Practice: Scripture - Session 2
  • Discussion
  • How have you seen your scripture reading/study improve?
  • What’s changed?
  • Do you find the Bible more compelling? Do you understand it better?


Reminder of the orthodox “story of scripture”: Oneness - otherness - otherness expanding - oneness in Jesus - perfect oneness restored (the exact wording may change, but this framework is universally accepted).

  • How does seeing the Bible like this enhance the way we read a moment of scripture like:
  • Leviticus 1-10
  • Mark 5:1-17 Gerasene Demoniac
  • Colossians 1:1-15
  • Genesis 1-3
  • Scripture Study Exercise
  • Do a lectio divina together as a group: John 17
  • Lectio Divina 
  • 1 minute Prayer of Blessing (Benediction) by the Small Group Leader
  • Begin discussion around Lent
  • What is everyone giving up?
  • What are people’s plans for the fast?


Week of Feb. 14 (Mark I - Week 1)

  • 3-5 minute community prayer and silence
  • Extended Sermon Discussion
  • Practice check-in and reflection
  • Discussion + Plan for group justice activity
  • Food bank, school backpacks, etc.
  • 1 minute Prayer of Blessing (Benediction) by the Small Group Leader



Week of Feb. 21 (Mark I - Week 2)

  • 3-5 minute community prayer and silence
  • Reflection on sermon
  • First Book Discussion
  • What have you learned from the first half of the book?
  • How has it complemented our sermon discussions?
  • How has it challenged the ways you view faith and Christianity?
  • How has it challenged the ways in which you follow Jesus?
  • How has it encouraged you?
  • Practice check-in and reflection
  • 1 minute Prayer of Blessing (Benediction) by the Small Group Leader




Week of Feb. 28 (Mark I - Week 3)

  • FUN
  • Feel free to pray together or have a brief discussion about the sermon, but make sure the goal of the night is FUN. A meal, a game, whatever it is that your group would enjoy, do it!



Week of March 7 (Mark I - Week 4)

  • 3-5 minute community prayer and silence
  • The Bible Project Video: The Gospel
  • Extended Sermon Discussion
  • Practice check-in and reflection
  • 1 minute Prayer of Blessing (Benediction) by the Small Group Leader



Week of March 14 (Mark II - Week 1)

  • 3-5 minute community prayer and silence
  • Spiritual Practice: Scripture - Session 3
  • Discussion
  • How have you seen your scripture reading/study improve?
  • What’s changed?
  • Do you find the Bible more compelling? Do you understand it better?
  • Are you getting more out of reading the Bible? In what ways?
  • What’s still challenging about studying the Bible?
  • What’s the next “frontier” in your study of scripture?
  • Prayer of Blessing (Benediction) by the Small Group Leader



Week of March 21 (Mark II - Week 2)

  • 3-5 minute community prayer and silence
  • Extended Sermon Discussion
  • Practice check-in and reflection
  • Remind everyone of the book finishing the following week
  • 1 minute Prayer of Blessing (Benediction) by the Small Group Leader



Week of March 28 (Mark II - Week 3)

  • Semester Reflection
  • How have your scripture consuming practices changed during the last 10 weeks?
  • How has your view of 
  • Who is in need of a community that we can invite into our group next semester?
  • Second Book Discussion
  • What did you think of the book? How would you rate it on goodreads?
  • What did you like about the book? What did you not like?
  • What were a couple of your main takeaways from the book?
  • How did the book challenge your views? In what ways?
  • How did the book encourage you? In what ways?
  • How can we keep learning in this direction from here?






Books (In order of difficulty, easiest to hardest)





Additional Notes:

  • Please encourage your members to attend every meeting of the semester. Consistency is key to growth and community and we want people to feel like they’re really a part of the group.




Additional Resources: