Gospel Communities are small communities of people that gather consistently throughout the week for the purpose of sharing life together, praying for one another’s needs and discovering how the gospel cultivates continued growth in and through us as followers of Jesus. – (Acts 2:42 – 47; Hebrews 10:23 – 25; 1Corinthians 15:1 – 4; John 20:21)
Who leads our Gospel Communities?
Our gospel communities are lead by members & leaders of The Well who have completed the process of membership and exhibit the gifts, experience, commitment & passion for leading a gospel community. We are committed to continually providing the training, evaluation & resources necessary for our leaders to guide our gospel communities into further health & growth in the gospel.
Where do our Gospel Communities meet?
Some gospel communities meet in coffee shops, some meet at local pubs, some meet in living rooms and some meet in the church building. Regardless of where a gospel community meets we always stress that growing together in the gospel as a community is not contingent on the building but is dependent upon the work of the gospel in each person within the community. This means that we are committed to fostering a diverse community of individuals who committed to gathering consistently, growing in the gospel and going back into their community contexts to serve & love other people.
Do our Gospel Communities follow a specific study?
Some gospel communities study through books together. Other gospel communities share the responsibility of bringing a passage of Scripture & discussion points within the members of the community. Other gospel communities study through entire books of the Bible together and other gospel communities facilitate conversations that hinge on the sermon from the Sunday gathering that week. The point here is not necessarily the delivery method (book, sermon, informal discussion, etc.) but the content (Scripture, the gospel, etc.) that the community is gathering & growing through.
What Is The Commitment To Lead A GC?
We will have gospel community leaders who continue to grow spiritually as disciples of Jesus & leaders of other people. (1Timothy 3:1 – 7)
We will have gospel community leaders who are being strengthened by God’s grace & are trustworthy to take what they are learning and pass it on to other people. (2 Timothy 2:1 – 2)
We will give responsibility of a gospel community to 1 – 2 committed leaders per group who understand their calling to ministry & are devoted to pursuing excellence & faithfulness in leadership despite adversity. (2 Timothy 4:1 – 5)
We will provide training for every gospel community leader through relational example, practical biblical teaching & hands on experience. (2 Timothy 3:10 – 17)
We will be intentional about gathering consistently in community with other disciples of Jesus under qualified leadership with biblical teaching & application. (Acts 2:42 – 47)
We will be committed to growing as disciples of Jesus by sharing life with other disciples, spending time in prayer & discovering how God’s Word is challenging you. (Hebrews 10:23 – 25)
We will be intentional about being gospel-saturated followers of Jesus whose lives are being shaped by gospel saturating activity such as listening to podcasts, reading books, journaling, praying, giving & serving others. (1 Corinthians 15:1 – 4)
We will be devoted as disciples of Jesus to going into our own relational contexts to proclaim the gospel in word & deed. (John 20:21)
What Are The Best Practices For A GC?
We believe a GC will be the most effective if the GC leader commits to the following best practices:
- Spend a minimum of 1hr per week studying material & praying for GC members.
- Communicate & work with GC members to choose a location & time that works best for consistent gatherings.
- Devise a system to provide food, snacks & refreshments for GC gatherings.
- Choose an Elder-approved study resource that best fits GC member’s growth needs.
- Communicate weekly with GC members via social media group, text, email, phone etc.
- Facilitate gatherings as follows:
1 Week Before: Remind GC members of items to bring, gathering date/time & location.
15-30min early: Ensure the space is ready: room temp, cleanliness, visuals, snacks, refreshments, etc.
10min: Welcome GC members as they arrive & direct them towards refreshments & snacks.
20min: Call gathering together & lead an opening prayer & icebreaker to get everyone involved.
50min: Facilitate a study/discussion where GC members discover God’s work in them & share life together.
10min: Pray for one another’s needs in response to what you’ve learned together.
5min: Bring meeting to a close by dispensing homework & next meeting reminders.
What Are The Essentials For Unity Within A GC?
We believe these commitments & activities are essential Biblical directives for preserving unity within our GC’s.
- We commit to holding nothing in our hearts against anyone within the Body of Christ, going immediately to anyone with whom we have any issue or criticism, working together with each other until we have worked it out, forgiving one another, praying together and restoring unity. (Hebrews 12:12-17)
- We commit to instructing people to go to the person, with whom they have been critical to personally deal with that criticism, reminding people who criticize another person that we are bound by a promise to bring all such criticism into the light & refuse secrecy with anyone in matters having to do with fellow believers. (Matt. 5:23-26; 18:15-20; Romans 12:9-21)
- We commit to observing strict confidentiality within private conversations at leadership meetings, or in smaller groups with each other when the conversation concerns people in the ministry by keeping comments anonymous. The exception would be comments of praise and commendation, which should be publicly shared. (Ephesians 4:1–3)
- We commit to praying for each other, each day by name. (Philippians 1:3–6)
- We commit to being actively involved in each other’s lives in pursuit of friendship and to be a personal resource of help and encouragement. (Hebrews 10:24–25)
- We commit to guarding against using words of negative or malicious criticism about other leaders or about the ministry itself to anyone but instead keep our speech about one another kind. (Psalm 55:12–14; Phil 4; 1Tim. 5:19-20)