SMALL GROUP ACCOUNTABILITY
A GROWTh at The Sanctuary is group of two or three people of the same gender who meet together regularly in a team effort to mutually grow mature lives and fulfill their God-given purposes through reading the Bible and journaling.
A GROWth friendship is not found but developed. It demands confidentiality and must be built on trust, which is earned over an extended period of time. GROWth Groups fall into three levels, corresponding to the length of relationship and depth of trust built among group members. The higher the level, the deeper the discussion goes and the greater the strength to mature. Regardless of level, the last question should always be, “How can I (we) pray for you this week?” Although the goal is deep friendships, we recommend each group moves slowly. It is not unusual for this process to take a year or more.
Why are GROWth Groups so small?
1. Comfort – It is easier to speak openly with two or three people.
2. Relationship – It is easier to build trust with fewer people.
3. Privacy – It is easier to keep things confidential - a must!|
4. Flexibility – It is easier to schedule and reschedule.
5. Convenience – It is easier to meet almost anywhere.
6. Time – It is easier to “connect” in an hour.
7. Reproducibility – It is easier to multiply when the group grows to a solid four.
Roles & Goals
Every person should take personal time to identify their God-given roles and write one or more goals for each. Examples are:
1. Christian - To read my Bible and pray daily
2. Husband - To be kind, patient, understanding and helpful
3. Father - To spend sufficient quality time and show interest
4. Employee - To be on-time, work hard and anticipate the needs of others
Regularly Applying God's Word
It's About GROWth
The spoken word has premium significance in relationships, society and throughout the Bible. What you will soon discover through your GROWth Journal is: the written word has equal significance. Your journal is the place where you will document your journey with God, His Word and the world around you. Because we all forget so easily, journaling is a great way of looking back on your life with written clarity and detail, the road you have traveled. Journaling records your life’s adventure and your personal growth as a Christian.
God's Word | write it down!
Writing out scripture is a practice going back thousands of years. God’s Word has been written and passed on in different languages and forms for generations. As I read the Bible each day, specific words, sentences, paragraphs and stories will stand out to me and have particular meaning in my life. I may want to highlight or underline the scripture in my Bible. Not only does writing out the scripture - word for word - help me apply God’s instructions in my existing situation but, it also helps me take the truth to heart and learn it for a lifetime, giving me the ability to affect and influence my future circumstances.
Reflecting | take it in!
Writing out personal observations regarding what I hear and see while reading the Bible is where the journey in a journal really begins. While surveying scripture, questions typically arise: What is it that stands out to me? What is God revealing to me through this particular verse? Who am I in this story? Is this something I see in my present situation? What principle for a fruitful life is God trying to disclose here? Stopping for a moment to reflect gives me a greater ability to be taught through God’s Word. Writing down my thoughts helps me communicate my feelings.
Offering | give it up!
Writing out personal prayer has immense benefits because it requires me to think through what I am trying to say to God. Rather than just speak and forget what I was asking, writing my prayers records my desires for the present and the future. When I write down my thoughts and requests to God, I can look back and see how He has answered me. (Don’t forget to record His answers in the Prayer List section as well.) When I pray to God I release to Him the task to accomplish those things which burden me. God is waiting for me to let go of those things which weigh me down.
Walking | live it out!
Writing out personal application to what I see and hear from God’s Word is a discipline most people often leave out. Where do I need to apply this wisdom from God? In what area of my life does God desire change? Where can I use God’s Word to transform my current situation? As I write down God’s purposes for my life, I become accountable to Him to obey and love Him in His direction. (For more on accountability with others see the “GROWth Groups” section in the back of your journal.)
thinking | consider it now!
How will I be different today because of what I have read in my Bible and wrote in my journal?