Your responsibility as a small group leader is primarily to shepherd the sheep that God puts into your care and to go out and bring more sheep into the fold. So . . .
·         Do not view yourself merely as a Bible study teacher or the equivalent of a Sunday school teacher who presents lessons to the group.
·         Do not limit your role to that of a meeting facilitator who plans and conducts discussions.
·         Do not think of yourself only as a disc-jockey, whose job is to put the DVD in the player and push play.
Ralph Neighbour put it this way:

The Shepherd never says, “I will tend the flock on Wednesday evenings from 7:00 to 9:30 p.m.” No! The Shepherd lives with the flock, sleeps in the fields with the flock, goes into treacherous situations to find a lost sheep, and carries the lambs in his arms. The Shepherd is the first one to go into the “valley of the shadow of death” to lead sheep to “green pastures.”

 I love that description–actually I think it’s a definition–of a small group leader.

Be a shepherd!

How do you see yourself as a small group leader? 

Portions of this post adapted from my book, I’m a Leader … Now What? How to Guide an Effective Small Group (Standard Publishing, 2007), chapter 4. 


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Michael Mack has been involved in small group ministry as a pastor, writer, trainer, and speaker for more than 25 years. He founded SmallGroups.com in 1995 and started Small Group Leadership in 2012. He became the 12th editor of Christian Standard magazine in 2017 and continues to speak in churches about small groups, discipleship, and leadership. He lives in Pewee Valley, Kentucky (just outside Louisville), with his wife Heidi. They have four young adult children. Michael enjoys mountain and road biking with a group of friends. See the "About Michael Mack" page under About Us for more about him.

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