I think Jesus loves small groups – especially groups that are actively on mission. The Bible doesn’t record him saying, “Let’s start a small group” or, “let’s further the Kingdom through small groups”. But he did both of those things.
Jesus, early in his ministry, formed a small group (Mark 3:13-19). The group he formed was constantly on a mission. He did at times have private teaching time with his disciples (Mark 4:10,11), but most instruction was a real practicum. Group members learned from the Master as he confronted life’s rough edges.
The gospels show Jesus taking his small group to minister to the sick, feed the hungry and even reach out to other cultures.
A small group that desires to emulate Christ’s example of practical outreach in their community could…..
Serve in a community soup kitchen
Bring food and clothing to a nearby homeless community
Bring meals to shut-ins
Visit the sick in the hospital
Visit residents in a nursing home
Bring the Good News to prisoners
Teach English in a local immigrant community
Invite a family from a local immigrant community for Christmas dinner
Organize a prayer walk through the community
Raise funds to support an outreach in another country
The possibilities for ministry are endless! Every need presents an opportunity to the small group that desires to put feet to their faith in their community. By faith, allow Jesus to use your small group to continue expanding his Kingdom!