As Wesley studied the book of Acts, he saw the spreading of the faith happening in the gathering of believers in small groups, usually in their homes.
These new "families of faith" produced transformed lives surrounded by a Godly support structure that kept them close to God and growing in their faith.
These groups allowed them to live holy lives by sharing their lives in intimate fellowship on a regular basis. Accountable Small groups provided an accountable environment in which seekers could receive support, accountability, and encouragement.
Wesley's development of small groups revolutionized 18th century England and then the whole Christian world by providing a framework to help people grow in a true 'holiness of heart and life.'
From Wesley's point of view, these small groups were especially important considering the temptation of culture to "fall away" and all the social evils that christians were exposed to.
This is the heart of the Gospel, the "Good News" that Christ proclaimed in Mark 1:14-15, Luke, Matthew and John.
God's presence, Emmanuel, has not retreated to a distant place, but now is dwelling with us, "tabernacling" (tenting) in our midst.
The Resurrection is proof of God's great grace and mercy of this unusual act of love.
An important realization is that in Christ, we begin to experience a heavenly, holy life even here on earth. (Phil 2:30)
God has already created a beautiful world that while may not be the "full" heaven to come, is none the less filled with creation, love and grace.
Sit quietly before God.
Work to let God dwell more and more in your heart.
Participate in some "centering" and/or "contemplative" prayer where you lay aside all the distractions and let the presence of God dwell in your heart more deeply than ever before.
There are others who share your passions and concerns. God has been working in their hearts to prepare them for this time.
As part of laying the foundation for a great small group, sit in silence with others as you prayer together, explore appropriate scripture together and listen together for how God is directing you in this time together.
Study carefully what it means to be a small group and also have various small groups around your congregation.
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