Life Transformation Groups

I received this in article in an email today from Josh Hunt. It's about Life Transformation Groups, which is a concept I really like, and something I've thought about a lot. Before you get to the article, I've included some links to related posts.

Getting Down to the Basics
Breaking Small Groups Down to Mentoring Relationships



How big should a group be?

Peter Wagner used to talk about the three "Cs"--

* Celebration -- unlimited size
* Congregation -- up to a hundred or so
* Cell -- small group, less than 20

Neil Cole has a different answer: three.

He calls it a Life Transformation Group (LTG) and has written a brand new book on it - Search and Rescue. Great read.

Perhaps you would consider starting a Life Transformation Group and making them a part of the culture of your small group and church. Here is some more information to help you decide.
What is a Life Transformation Group?

A life transformation group is a simple but powerful concept. It is a group of two or three (when it gets to four it divides into two groups to two) that agrees to read approximately thirty chapters of scripture a week, and meet weekly for

* Confession of sin
* Accountability around scripture reading
* Prayer for the lost

The group can meet any time, anywhere--most commonly in a restaurant. The groups are not coed. There is not ba ook or curriculum; they just read and discuss the Bible. (Pretty far out, I know!) There is a pretty healthy intake of scripture--about thirty chapters a week. If everybody does not do the agreed on reading, they agree to read it again. There is no leader needed in the group.
What are the accountability questions?

Groups can adapt of substitute on this, but here are the suggested questions used for discussion:

1. Have you been a testimony this week to the greatness of Jesus Christ with both your words and actions?
2. Have you been exposed to sexually alluring material or allowed your mind to entertain inappropriate thoughts about someone who is not your spouse this week?
3. Have you lacked any integrity in your financial dealings this week, or coveted something that does not belong to you?
4. Have you been honoring, understanding and generous in your important relationships this past week?
5. Have you damaged another person by your words, either behind their back or face-to-face?
6. Have you given in to an addictive behavior this week? Explain.
7. Have you continued to remain angry toward another?
8. Have you secretly wished for another’s misfortune so that you might excel?
9. ___________________________
10. Did you finish your reading this week and hear from the Lord? What are you going to do about it?
11. 10. Have you been completely honest with me?

Neil Cole has been doing LTGs or a long time. He has experimented with and collected quite a number of alternate lists of questions. Consider Wesley's questions:

1. Am I consciously or unconsciously creating the impression that I am better than I am? In other words, am I a hypocrite?
2. Am I honest in all my acts and words, or do I exaggerate?
3. Do I confidentially pass onto another what was told me in confidence?
4. Am I a slave to dress, friends, work , or habits?
5. Am I self-conscious, self-pitying, or self-justifying?
6. Did the Bible live in me today?
7. Do I give it time to speak to me everyday?
8. Am I enjoying prayer?
9. When did I last speak to someone about my faith?
10. Do I pray about the money I spend?
11. Do I get to bed on time and get up on time?
12. Do I disobey God in anything?
13. Do I insist upon doing something about which my conscience is uneasy?
14. Am I defeated in any part of my life?
15. Am I jealous, impure, critical, irritable, touchy or distrustful?
16. How do I spend my spare time?
17. Am I proud?
18. Do I thank God that I am not as other people, especially as the Pharisee who despised the publican?
19. Is there anyone whom I fear, dislike, disown, criticize, hold resentment toward or disregard? If so, what am I going to do about it?
20. Do I grumble and complain constantly?
21. Is Christ real to me?

This list, adapted by Phil Helfer, is a simplified list:

1. Have you experienced God in your life this week?
2. What is God teaching you?
3. How are you responding to his prompting?
4. What sin do you need to confess?
5. How did you do with your reading this week?

Want a really simple list?

1. What is God telling you?
2. What are you doing about it

Benefits of the LTG System

The benefits of the LTG system include:

* Community. It is easier to get open and honest in a very small group.
* Accountability. A group of two or three has a greater degree of strength in accountability
* Confidentiality. Since confessing of sin is necessary for cleansing and preparing ones self for a life of service, a safe place for it is essential.
* Communication. It is easier to communicate with fewer people.
* Flexibility. Ever try to coordinate the calendars of half a dozen people for a meeting? Meeting with two or three is much easier. Groups can meet anytime, anywhere.
* Reproducibility. By building reproducibility at this base level, we lay the foundation for the reproduction of small groups and churches.
* God-like. Even the godhead exists in a group of three.

Still not sure? Google Life Transformation Groups. You will find they are being used or adapted in a wide variety of churches. You must might find an adaptation that strikes a chord with you.

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