Worshiping In Community
Small Churches take place during the week at different homes throughout the area. The goal of having Small Churches is the same as the goal of the Big Church, which is simply to lift up the name of Jesus. Although the goal is the same the effect will be different. The Big Church environment is more structured simply because of the number of people and not everyone may get to talk. But the Small Church is less structured and provides opportunity for all parts of the body to share what God has laid on their heart. It is a time to ask questions and learn through challenging each other on a personal level. It is also a time to discuss how to obey and apply in our everyday lives the word that we hear proclaimed on Sunday mornings. Small Church provides the opportunity to partner together “on mission” by serving others who don't know Jesus and inviting them to become disciples of Christ and follow Him by faith.
While we absolutely believe that both Big and Small Church are equally important in the life of any Christ follower, we acknowledge that the great need in our western Church culture is for people to be more intimately connected in the body of Christ. This is why we place a strong emphasis on getting involved in a Small Church. We acknowledge that it is easy to become a hearer of the word and not a doer of the word (James 1:22-23) if a person is only involved in a Big Church setting. Being committed to a Small Church may not prevent us from becoming "hearers only" but it is a safeguard and a means of grace that helps us grow as disciples.
Another reason we emphasize Small Church is that it affirms we were not meant to live the Christian life alone. Although it wasn't explicitly commanded the early church so loved one another that they gladly gave up their possessions and gave to each as they had need. They ate meals together and ministered to one another's needs. (Acts 2: 44-47) Paul in writing to the Thessalonian church says that he didn't just share the word with them but he shared his very life with them and referred to them as his children. (1 Thessalonians 2:7-11) In 1 Corinthians 14:26-33 we see that there were several people who would speak and others would "weigh in" on what was said. This type of interaction is difficult to do in a typical Big Church setting where there are many people. The reason a human body functions properly is because each part is effectively connected to other parts. How ineffective would the hand be if not connected to the arm? And how ineffective would the arm be without an elbow and a shoulder? So to be effectively connected to each other we must be committed to being together more than just an hour and a half on Sunday morning.