If you’re a LifeGroup Leader at some point in time, you’ll ask yourself, “how do I honour God and my LifeGroup when people seem so unfaithful and inconsistent in participation.”
At one time your LifeGroup had 12 members, but last week only six showed up. You invited 20 people to start a new group, but only five decided to show. Don’t be discouraged, in reality, these situations happen to every LifeGroup at some point in time.
Here are a few things to remind yourself when riding the attendance roller coaster.
It’s Not About You
A deeply connected community of relationships that we can feel safe within and grow together is what everyone wants, yet for whatever reason, it’s also what people resist the most.
In the beginning, most people get excited about this possibility. They hastily sign up for a group, but then life gets in the way. Even Chuck Norris admitted, “I was just a start-and-stop guy. I could never really follow through on anything that I started.” For most people, the road to you-know-where is paved with good intentions, but poor follow through.
Keep them on Your Radar
If members of the group don’t show up for LifeGroup, keep the communication flowing. Email, text, or phone if you have to, but keep them connected to the group. Let them know you’ve been wondering, thinking, even praying for them.
Chances are good they won’t slam the door in your face but reciprocate with openness or honesty. Who doesn’t want someone to purposefully and earnestly pursue them?
So, my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and immovable. Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless. 1 Corinthians 15:58
Concentrate on Who Showed Up
Rather than focusing so much energy on those that didn’t show, put your energy into the ones that did. There are things you can talk about with two or four that you can’t discuss with eight or ten. Maybe you do the lesson; perhaps you set it aside.
Before you start beating yourself up or your group members, do a quick check-in with God: and ask, “What do You intend for this group meeting? It doesn’t look like what I planned, so what have You planned?” His plans are far better anyway!
Don’t Lose Your Focus
Remember, your LifeGroup and the ministry of your group are not the same. Some members may never show up. Or, they’ll come once or twice, and then you won’t hear from them for a while.
Don’t forget, whether they attend every week or once in a blue moon, they are yours. The group members who meet three out of four times a month are, genuinely, your LifeGroup. Everyone else is the ministry of the group. There is no doubt a reason God has placed these people in your life. Keep up with them. Help when they need help. Pray for them. Focus on ministering to these people and not some tricky plot to convince them back to the group with your kindness, but don’t be surprised that it might work out that way. This is your opportunity to serve, even if you never get anything in return like Hebrew 6:10 says, For God is not unjust. He will not forget how hard you have worked for him and how you have shown your love to him by caring for other believers, as you still do.
In a perfect world, everyone would show up to every LifeGroup meeting, but this is not a perfect world. In reality, you might be the only connection someone has to the Body of Christ.