As a former Minister of Education, starting new groups was always a challenge to me and the education staff members I led. In most cases we had the classroom space, but struggled to have enough volunteer teachers. We knew that for every new class we started we’d add about 10-12 people to the total Sunday School attendance, so new groups were always important to us in the effort to be missional and reach new people for Christ. To help churches start new groups, I initiated a new product at LifeWay called LIFESOURCE, and it’s helping churches start new groups.
LIFESOURCE is a 13-session DVD-driven curriculum that features the video teaching of a friend of mine, Bret Robbe. Bret is the Director of Adult Publishing at LifeWay and does a tremendous job leading the 13 video sessions. They are fun, energetic, and contain creative illustrations that engage the learners in the teaching/learning process.
What makes LIFESOURCE different than other video-driven curricula is the addition of 13 messages recorded just for class members; these video messages are about 6-8 minutes in length and are designed to help class members think through essential actions they should take to get the class off to a healthy start. Those messages are played at the beginning of each class session so the class can engage in healthy discussion about how they might implement the suggested idea. Another 13 messages were recorded just for the leader of the group to watch privately during the week. Those messages relate to the one the class members hear, and it gives the teacher encouragement to provide leadership and direction to accomplish the suggested idea. At the end of the 13 sessions, the facilitator/teacher will continue to lead the class in an ongoing curriculum series, rather than being dependent on dvd-driven resources.
I am leading training at Ridgecrest Baptist Church in Madison, MS., that is using LIFESOURCE in all of its adult and student classes. The Minister of Education had originally intended to use the new resource to start new classes, but the word spread to other adult classes and he and the pastor decided that every class from 6th grade and up should participate in the LIFESOURCE study for 13 sessions to “kickstart” the work of their Sunday School classes! Now there’s a use that we didn’t anticipate, but we sure hope the resource delivers what their classes need to be healthier, more vibrant groups. The pastor plans to preach a message that compliments the weekly Bible study, and hopes that this will add even more energy to the use of the LIFESOURCE curriculum.
To learn more about LIFESOURCE, click here to go to the product page at the new lifeway.com website. Maybe LIFESOURCE can help you get some new groups started, too!