TIME BOMBS THAT KILL A CELL
BY REV. GWYNN LEWIS
Too Many People in a Cell.
The object is to multiply cells, not add people. A group will only grow to a certain point, depending on the size of the house. It can be exciting to have a group of 25 in the beginning, but the excitement will dry up. The group will stagnate and die. Real life comes from multiplying cells. When ten or more people gather together, the dynamic changes and intimacy is lost. It would be more productive to multiply this group into two groups of five. Always leave room for growth!
Everyone is too comfortable.
The “us four, no more” syndrome will stifle growth. As comfort levels rise, lethargy moves in. The comfy atmosphere will keep your cell from reaching out to the lost, hearing from God, and ministering to others if it involves walking on the edge or making waves. Don’t confuse comfort with safety. Cell members need confidentiality and God’s love for open and honest ministry. Separate the security of the cell from the non-productive comfort that will keep your members from reaching out to a hurting world.
The cell meeting turns into a little celebration service.It’s impossible to duplicate the dynamic of a big group in a small
group. Don’t try. The celebration format is centered around highly trained leader/teacher/musician types. If you do, cell members will become spectators instead of participants. Being small gains the advantages of open sharing, input, and group ownership.
The vision is not reinforced.
If you don’t carry the vision of servanthood and evangelism to your cell members every week, they will quickly form new reasons to meet together. Among your other responsibilities, you must be a coach and a cheerleader for your cell. Reinforce the vision of reaching out through testimonies, praise reports and group-planned outreach events.
Failure to train leaders.
The growth of the cell movement is based on raising up leaders from within. The highest priority for the cell leader is to identify
prospective interns and begin the mentoring process. When you minister to cell members and invest time in lifestyle evangelism, your interns should be there with you, growing and learning from personal experience.
No ministry time in the cell meeting.
At least one third of the time of your weekly meeting must be open for God to move and for people to minister to each other. This is God’s time – do not plan or structure it wait for the Holy Spirit to move. Enter into God’s power-time with the expectation that He is going to do something spectacular. Get out of His way and watch Him do extraordinary things through ordinary people. Remember, even pagans like to be prayed for … don’t stop the ministry time when unbelievers are present. They will see the power of God firsthand, and say “surely God is among you!”
Too much planning for cell meetings.
Most church leaders today are trained as program managers and the tendency is to develop yet another “small group program.” The basic plan for a cell meeting is to have an ice breaker, a time of worship, time for God to minister through His people, and time to cast the vision of the cell through sharing and prayer concerning unreached oikos members.
Too much reliance on human resources.
It is easier to plan everything out than to trust the Lord. The most powerful ministry and evangelistic tools available to us are spiritual gifts and basic Christian community.
The people lose their vision.
People are capable of completely losing their vision in just a few weeks! This will lead to a lack of involvement or your cell will lose
its primary focus. You must carry the vision and repeat the vision every week during cell to your members. Be the coach and the
cheerleader for what Jesus has commissioned you to do. Rah, Rah, Rizm, Servanthood and Evangelism!
Failure to find and train interns.
The heart and soul of a cell group movement is bringing up new leaders from within. If you focus on evangelism alone, you will reach the lost and leave them into a lonely spiritual life without mentorship. Focus on developing leaders rather than new believers, and include reaching the lost as part of their fundamental training. The highest priority for a cell leader is to identify a prospective intern and start training them. If you don’t have at least one intern in your cell, you cannot multiply. BOOM!
People’s involvement in programs.
Involvement in church programs will siphon the energy for outreach from cell members. This is especially true of churches that are transitioning to cells. If a church is serious about being a cell church instead of a church with cells, you and your members must be free of other church obligations. Programs will keep you from dedicating the time and energy needed to develop a strong unbelieving oikos.
The cell meets in the leader’s home.
A cell will rarely multiply when this occurs. This sometimes leads to ownership and control problems, but more importantly, the leader should be the one to go out to the new cell with some of the members when it is time to multiply and leave his apprentice with the original group. Leaving your own home for cell life will cause large explosions with your family.
Never fall into a routine. Always look to the creativity of the members of the cell to provide new ideas. Newness brings a sense of novelty that attracts new people and keeps the old ones excited about being involved. God is a god of creation, He will continue creating, the Spirit will keep movement happening and Jesus Christ will supply the regeneration.
Day after day, in the temple courts and from house to house, they never stopped teaching and proclaiming the good news that Jesus is the Christ. Acts 5:42
THE ABOVE MATERIAL WAS PUBLISHED BY TOUCH OUTREACH MINISTRIES, 2000, “CELLEBRATING” CELLCHURCH MAGAZINE, PAGES 153-156.
THIS MATERIAL IS COPYRIGHTED AND MAY BE USED FOR STUDY & RESEARCH PURPOSES ONLY.