by Joel Comiskey
I avoided speaking about close fellowship (community) in small groups for many years because I feared groups would stop growing. My first book Home Cell Group Explosion highlighted evangelism and multiplication in small groups worldwide. In that book and subsequent ones, I didn’t talk much about community, only mentioning that community would take care of itself when people were reaching out.
God changed everything in 2009. I realized while writing the book Relational Disciple that I needed to submit to God’s inerrant Word. I saw clearly that Scripture encouraged community and that community might even be considered the most important element in small group ministry.
I realized that Jesus came to establish a new family, and he chose the small group as the way to make this happen. God challenged my thinking and led me to develop a more biblical worldview when looking at small group ministry. Since then, I’ve fallen in love with the richness of small group community and promote it often.
I’m now ready to wait until community and love is developed in the group and that new disciples are formed in the cell. I now rejoice in the richness of community.