Connect, Grow, and Mobilize

As a staff, we are excited to be receiving the positive feedback surrounding our Vision Casting during the month of January. As we enter February, our goal is to continue implementing the Vision that Rob presented to our church. A Vision that answers four very important Whys: why Oconee Heights is here, why You are here, why living life in Community matters, and why we are called to live life on Mission. So where do we go from here?

At Oconee Heights, we exist to Know Christ and to make Him Known. These words are not just a catchy phrase but rather serve as the heartbeat of our church. From the onset of Small Groups, our goal has been to Connect, Grow, and Mobilize our community, meaning that we want to surround you with a group of friends (Connect) to help you Know Christ (Grow) and make Him Known (Mobilize). We are not trying to reinvent the wheel with Small Groups, but rather provide you with close relationships to help you engage with the mission of our church. So why does living life in Community matter?

The story that has been blowing up my heart recently comes from Mark 2:1-12. We see that four guys carry a paralytic man to Jesus. These guys cared more about their friend’s future than his present circumstances. They knew that he needed a way to Jesus, and they literally carried him there. A Small Group can serve a dual purpose when it comes to this story. First, you can be one of the four men carrying a fellow member to Jesus, walking beside them through tragedy all the while leading them to their Savior. Providing encouragement and support when life has beaten them down. But if you are like me, there are times when you would consider yourself as the paralytic. We find the Second application of this story here. Not only can you be one to carry fellow Small Group members, you can also be carried. When everything seems to be falling apart around you, and you need someone in your life to come alongside you, pick you up, and carry you to Jesus, enter your Small Group. We don’t live in a perfect, stress-free bubble. You and I both know that life can be overwhelming at times. An unexpected sickness, the passing of a loved one, a disheartening diagnosis, or a strained relationship are real circumstances that so many of us endure, and without a group of people surrounding you, it may feel like you have to endure them alone. My passion as the Small Groups Pastor is to provide you with an environment to build deep, meaningful relationships so that you don’t have to do life alone.

If you are not yet involved with a Small Group, I encourage you to get involved. It’s an investment emotionally and spiritually. You decide where to invest your time and resources. Why not invest them in a Small Group this year? From experience, the return is WELL worth the time.

My question to you is, “Who is carrying you to Jesus?” If you asked me, my response without hesitation is my Small Group. What is yours?

Matthew Efird

Small Group Pastor