“Fellowship is not when two saints get together.
Fellowship is when two saints get together and talk about Jesus!”
~ Paul Washer
The WHAT of Home Fellowship Groups
Home Fellowship Groups (HFG’s) are designed to help believers encourage and challenge each other to consistently apply the truths of God’s Word to every area of their lives. This Biblical accountability will help you to grow, both in your knowledge of God and also in the godliness of your Christian walk. HFG’s are one of CBC’s primary vehicles for discipleship and for meeting the needs of each person who is a part of our church family.
Each HFG meets three to four times a month and is led by a trained HFG Leader. Lasting typically between 1-2 hours HFG meetings include time for prayer, fellowship, accountability, and of course, Bible study. This format allows whole families to attend together.
The WHY of Home Fellowship Groups
These Bible studies are sermon-based. This does NOT mean that they are simply the last Sunday’s sermon served up cold during the week! Rather, the studies are designed to take the participants deeper into the Scriptures, pursuing the topic(s) of the sermon further than is possible during one hour in the Worship Service. There is also a deliberate focus on application–taking the truths taught on Sunday, and applying them to the nuts and bolts of daily life. Any parent or teacher knows the value of going over the same material, not just once, but twice, with differing illustrations and emphases.
The study questions will be available in the bulletin every Sunday, and they will also be posted on the CBC website. We strongly encourage people to work through these questions ahead of time so that they are truly prepared to discuss them in their HFG.
The WHO of Home Fellowship Groups
These groups are intended to edify CBC member families and regular attenders. However, the HFG’s are also open to church visitors and interested neighbors, or other unbelievers who might be persuaded to come to a small group. We will ask people to sign up for a specific HFG, and when that group is as big as the space in that the home will allow, the group will be closed. Because of this, we will be asking people to be COMMITTED to attending the HFG for which they sign up.
The WHEN of Home Fellowship Groups
HFG’s meet Wednesday & Thursday evenings, depending on the host family availability.
The WHERE of Home Fellowship Groups
CBC families open their homes to host these groups. We try to scatter these locations around the area so everyone can find a group somewhere near them.
The HOW OFTEN of Home Fellowship Groups
The goal is to have two HFG semesters, one beginning in mid-September and running to December, and the other from mid-January to the end of May. During the summer months we will offer different summer courses, each lasting 6-8 weeks, on topics such as Theology, Marriage and Family, Parenting, Husband issues (men only), Wife issues (ladies only), etc.
The GOALS of Home Fellowship Groups
God wants every follower of Jesus to be continually growing as we worship Christ, walk with Christ, work for Christ, and witness for Christ. Each HFG is committed to progressive sanctification, mutual care, fellowship, service and multiplication (Colossians 1:28-29; Matthew 28:18-20).
Sanctification is an on-going work of God and man that makes us increasingly free from sin and more and more like Christ. As we seek to grow in our sanctification small groups provide the ideal context for encouragement, correction and accountability to occur. We want our HFG’s to fulfill Proverbs 27:17: “As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.”
Mutual Care means that Christians will be characterized by their sacrificial love for each other. We are commanded to care for each other unselfishly, without favoritism. “Carry each other’s burdens,” Paul writes, “and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ” (Galatians 6:2). We want to see the members of each HFG caring for each other in spiritual and practical ways.
Fellowship is the third purpose of our HFG’s. Fellowship means to participate together, or to communicate things we hold in common. The greatest common denominator between us as Christians is our relationship with God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. This forms the content of true fellowship. Thus, our relationship with God should be the main topic of our conversation within our small groups as we participate together to fulfill HIS purpose in the local Church.
Service is the fourth purpose of our HFG’s. God has given spiritual gifts to every Christian (1 Peter 4:10). He fully expects us to use them. In this smaller, more personal context of an HFG, each one can serve the others according to the gifting of the Holy Spirit.
Multiplication means eventually forming more groups, as God adds people, so that others who are not yet in an HFG can join one that will meet their spiritual needs.
What if I’m thinking about leading or hosting an HFG?
Speak with the either the pastor or one of the elders, and we will get you started. The best way to get involved is to begin regularly attending an HFG, and ask the leader or host to train you in what they do. Hosting an HFG or leading one is not as difficult as you might think, and the rewards are eternal!