How to recruit new members

How to recruit new members

So you want to start a small group. But who else should be in it? Here are some practical tips for recruiting small-group members.

•   Recognize the power of prayer. According to Eph. 1:15-21, Paul was passionate about people's development and was specific about praying for their needs. Begin by asking God to help you envision the people He wants you to reach.

•   Know your target group member. Is your focus on newly married, new Christians, seekers, young adults, or working moms? Don't overlook existing friendships-people with whom you would enjoy sharing a spiritual pilgrimage.

•   Build a core group first. Don't be a lone ranger. Recruit a friend or two who, with you, will form the core of the group. This will give you multiplied prayer action, an extended web of contacts, leadership encouragement, and a guaranteed group on opening night.

•   Know the details. Be prepared to give potential recruits the time, location, date, purpose, and so on, so they can make an informed decision. A clear plan communicates that you believe their time is valuable.

•   Give breathing room. Don't expect an immediate commitment. Don't tell people it is "now or never." Allow them time to pray and evaluate this new opportunity.

•   Celebrate! At your first meeting, look around you. These are people God has led your way. Numbers don't count. Gratitude-for a few recruits or for many-goes a long way toward helping people feel valued.

By Mark LeMaire, Excerpted from Discipleship Journal. Issue #107 September/October 1998. All rights reserved.