I just completed reading a new book by Eddie Mosley titled Connecting in Communities. Eddie is the executive director of GroupLife at LifePoint Church in Smyrna, Tennessee. The book is excellent and I definitely recommend it, especially to education ministers, adult discipleship directors, and home group leaders. Pastors will enjoy the book too, especially where it addresses the development of a small group strategy in the local church.
Some Key Thoughts from the Book
This book is incredibly practical. I really loved how Eddie adds some suggestions for practical implementation at the end of each chapter for both small group leaders and also for people who oversee a church’s small group ministry.
Eddie shares many personal stories to help illustrate the key points he is making in the book. In fact, several times Mosley states that you should actually be involved in a small group before overseeing the church’s small group ministry. I have found this to be especially helpful for pastors and education ministers. It is so easy for us to get so busy overseeing that we are not taking part in what is one of the church’s most important ministries. As Mosley states, it is hard for us to understand the culture of small group life when we are not participating in it.
Furthermore, Eddie does an excellent job bringing a missional challenge to small group ministry. Throughout the book, he encourages people to start new home groups in their neighborhoods and provides some practical input about how to do it. He has several personal stories of how he or someone in his group was able to provide ministry and lead people to Christ because their small group was known throughout the neighborhood.
I think one of the strongest points that Eddie makes through the book pertains to leadership development and training. Eddie addresses curriculum (pp. 133-140); an excellent year-round leadership training model (pp. 120-121); LifePoint’s three expectations of their small groups, which are Discipleship, Community, and Service (p. 50); and also a very good leadership discovery process (pp. 107-112).
One critical area that Eddie covers well is how to move from a Sunday School small groups model to a home group model. His advice – don’t lose your job over it! Seriously! He does however give some helpful ideas such as not making the change too fast, start small, and start with turbo groups.
This is one of the best books on small groups that I have read and it should be in every education minister’s library – complete with yellow highlighter notes and dog-eared pages (you should see my copy).