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 The cell group who refuses to multiply

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T O P I C    R E V I E W
touchadmin Posted - 09/03/2003 : 22:01:08
Sandy's friend is a cell leader of another group in their church. While the church's public and shared vision is to multiply groups with new believers and leaders, this cell leader and his group just don't want to multiply!

The group is fifteen in number. They've found a deep love for one another, which this particular set of people had never experienced in traditional church life before.

Cell leaders (pastors and coaches, please don't answer this one!), it's time to think through a process of helping this group become more "outward and forward" focused. Put on your coach's hat and suggest a step-by-step process to help this group!
15   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
richshome Posted - 11/30/2005 : 19:47:16
Originally posted by RedSalt

Considering that the dicussion of this post is under "Cell Leader's Discussion" I think it would be fair to stick with the model of ministry being talked about. I would agree that scripture does not have much, if anything, about the multiplication of its small group structure :) but lets see what might help this group to multiple.

Very good introduction to your reply. I feel the same way. We could talk about all kinds of small group ideas but this specific topic has to do with cell groups and when to multiply them.

Ultimately, the cell leader needs to be gently reminded what he signed up for in the first place. If the equipping was good and the vision of cell coaching was communicated adequately the cell leader should not become argumetative when he is reminded that the purpose of cells is to win the lost so that they can win the lost, so that they can win...

Seeking An Audience of One,
Richard Aronson
henry Posted - 09/28/2005 : 01:49:27
as a cell leader we suppose to understand that leadership is all about our heart, if you leads without a heart that is full of love, it is very impossible to win souls for christ;or multiple your group when your cell members are looking upward to gain upliftment from you as a leader;but if they find out that your heart is dark. not full with love and passions; you will lose them.
henry Posted - 04/06/2005 : 05:05:59
it is always good to see the cell group multiplications that is what the word of God says when it says go you into the word preach the good news.
RedSalt Posted - 10/02/2004 : 19:44:43
"...prepared and ready leaders are the key. This is where the focus must remain to create new groups, right?"

Very good point! It needs to be that and something that I had not really thought through as a conscious thought. I my mind I was saying, well of course they need to be prepared... then the next obvious question and something that I'm sure many aspiring cell planters like to know is what steps rightly prepare someone to be ready to lead and what does that person look like?

What has been the normal (if there is such a thing) process in taking someone from Salvation to Leadership?
touchadmin Posted - 10/02/2004 : 18:56:57
This is a hard question to answer.

If I were coaching a group, I would work hard throughout our relationship to help the group raise up a new leader or two and assist the group leader in mentoring them into persons who are mature enough to have their own group.

Some times, groups get large and they should be multiplied or send out a group to plant a new group... but numerical size is not the key here... prepared and ready leaders are the key. This is where the focus must remain to create new groups, right?

Randall Neighbour
Forum Administrator
RedSalt Posted - 10/01/2004 : 14:50:23
that makes tremendous sense and I myself experienced the "Ah ha" moment you spoke about.

Would you actually go so far as to not encourage the group to multiply if they were not ready then... whenever that "ready" point is?
touchadmin Posted - 10/01/2004 : 09:01:51
I haven't chimed in here at all, but I thought I'd share a new discovery on this topic which I included in my book "Community Life 101":

Michael Mack, the author of Leading From The Heart has another little booklet that he self published for his church to use on this topic. In it, he shares a story of a dysfunctional family where the parents are 65+ years old and their 3 adult children, ranging from 29 ~ 41 STILL live and home and play with the dog, build models in their room, etc.

He compares this odd, unbalanced family to a small group that does not help people grow up and move out of the "house." Powerful illustration.

So, I no longer challenge a group to multiply, but to become spiritual parents and help the spiritual children in the group to mature to the point that they want to grow up and move out of the group and begin their own spiritual family.

By explaining it this way, it provides an "ah ha!" moment for everyone and gets them discipling people as one of the main goals.

Hope this helps!

Randall Neighbour
Forum Administrator
RedSalt Posted - 09/28/2004 : 16:41:27

I recently had a talk with a cell leader and he was having difficulty about the whole idea that we are even thinking about multiplying. I said to him that basiclly I think we have limited understanding from scripture about cell group structures, but sociologically speaking a group significantly changes when you go from 10 members to 15. In theory this may be reason enough to begin to look at muliplying when a group reaches 12-15 members.

I'm sure you've seen/ read it before how many communication lines you have when you have 15 members and your intimacy suffers because of that.


RedSalt Posted - 09/07/2004 : 14:57:54
Considering that the dicussion of this post is under "Cell Leader's Discussion" I think it would be fair to stick with the model of ministry being talked about. I would agree that scripture does not have much, if anything, about the multiplication of its small group structure :) but lets see what might help this group to multiple.

Before there is a #1 step, there need to be a step in prayer. Seeking the Lord for His wisdom and direction. The lord will build His church and we need to listen attentively to what He wants us to do.

1) Teaching and encouragement about the importance of Evangelism within the group. If they continue to not reach out to others the tendency might be to stop seeing ones need to reach the lost. This can happen very easily.

- A preventative way I have seen help with this process is to remind the group that the purpose and plan of the cell is to edify the believer and evangelize the lost. Remind them every so often that we one day will multiply, not to tear relationships apart but bring more into relationship with us.

*** side note *** plan ahead for this... the mentor for the cell leader aught to fully disclose what would be expected of the cell leader... To support and follow through with the cell model of the church. i.e. multiplication

2) If the cell leader still does not want to multiply then I would encourage the Mentor to call that cell leader to prayer for his decision not to multiply. Going on the assumption that the Lord has directed the leadership of the church to follow a particular system of multiplication this allows the person to be directed from the Lord.

3) If the cell leader still fails to see the need to multiply then it might be best to "Gently Encourage" the cell leader to multiply the cell at a certain point in time.

4) If this does not work then remind them again of the direction of the cell ministry and let them know that consistency needs to be followed in the cell ministry. Having different types of cells (ones where some multiply and others do not) does not show unity in what the church is doing.

Above all, as i started this post... prayer, prayer and some more. God will lead and direct us even when we do not know what the next step is.

Now I am certainly throwing out some black and white directives, but I am open to anyones response.

Mark Browne Posted - 09/07/2004 : 11:57:02
In this discussion it is important to separate local practice- leading of the Lord, from Scriptural injunctions. You will find examples in Scripture of small groups of less than 15, but it is a big jump to say if this works in, say, Twin Falls Idaho so it will work in Korea or Chicago.

We could agree that one of the fundamental purposes of Christians meeting together in community is that they reach out. But to say 12 or 15 is the magic number, or that they grow at a specific rate is to exceed Scripture. When Jesus said, "I will build my church" I think he was saying that he will grow it in the way he wants, at the rate he wants, etc.
adeno Posted - 08/12/2004 : 05:15:12
When a group gets to be 15, it becomes increasingly difficult to grow both in numbers and spiritually for individuals. Communication lines fade as it is difficult to spend quality time with each person if you are only meeting between 2-3hours a week. Hence the smaller the group, the more time we can spend with one another. Discussions can go deeper. Needs can effectively be met through prayer and support. So if we want a healthy outward looking cell members, we should aim for an environment that fosters closeness, and that means small.

My church in Malaysia encourages cell leaders to plan for multiplication once we touch 15 consistently. Before that, I tried to encourage leadership in certain individuals. I watered, God grew them. About a month back we multiplied. The group had 18 people. I challenged my core team (leaders) to multiply small. I took 6 (including myself) and the other leader took 12. I then challenged the leaders to look to 12 as a threshold, instead of 15 (God spoke to me on this one). I heard the other leader now wants to multiply before the years' end.

Jesus ministered to anyone who came to him, but he really invested his time to only 12 to grow them for a mission. This is God incarnate with 12. I, a mere mortal shudder to think how I would cope with 15.

Inspire a fire!
Link H Posted - 02/07/2004 : 10:14:08
George Patterson is a missionary author whose writings are popular with missionaries. He writes works about church multiplication and church planting and coaches, sharing his years of experience.

He came up with a list of the WRONG things to do in a home group. One was to force the group to split after a certain period of time.

One poster asked what the Bible says. I don't see anything in the Bible about forcing a church to split. Keep in mind this group only has 15 people.

Why should a home group split into 2? Sometimes there are too many people to fit in a house, and people are driving long distances. Sometimes people may feel led by the Lord to split.

Why should we try to force a group to split unnaturally to conform with our own strategy or goals.

athanasius Posted - 12/19/2003 : 07:07:03
So, Casey...what do the scriptures say about it?

contra mundum
Casey Posted - 10/02/2003 : 06:19:35
Maybe the group should take a look in the scriptures to find out what it says about vision for church and community life?
Casey D
touchadmin Posted - 10/02/2003 : 01:57:41
I can't believe no one has offered anything on this one... come on, people! Start posting!!!

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