Next Steps After Journey

Journey Groups are not “ends” in themselves, but rather “means” to an end. We encourage people to get discipled in Journey Groups, so that they in turn will serve others with their specific, God-given gifts. For that reason, we do not allow Journey Groups to stay together “as is” indefinitely. They are designed to come to an end after three years.

We see this principle of multiplication modeled by our Lord. Jesus’ ministry to His “small group” of twelve was only three years long, and at the end of the three years, He expected them to go out and do for others what He had just done for them. In John 14, Jesus warned them that that day was coming. The disciples’ hearts were troubled, and it’s easy to see why: They didn’t want to “lose” their leader and disband their fellowship! But Jesus encouraged them by promising to be with them through the ministry of the Holy Spirit as they went out and made more disciples (see Matt 28:19-20).

The key to getting excited about launching out of our existing groups is to look more at the vast needs outside our groups than to look at the comforts within our groups. After sharing the Gospel with the Samaritan woman at the well, Jesus turned to His disciples (His “small group”!) and said, “Lift up your eyes and look at the fields, for they are already white for the harvest!” (John 4:35). Later, he told them “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field. Go! I am sending you…” (Luke 10:2-3). Our goal with Journey, therefore, is to “make disciples who make disciples.” The needs are too great to not do this! May we rather lose every comfort than to see people not following Jesus with all their hearts!

Practically speaking, what does this look like in our church context? Once you complete your three years of Journey, we certainly will not “force” you into a leadership position (we would never do that). But we do expect you to be yielded to the Holy Spirit and use your God-given gifts—whatever they are. If God is calling you into leadership of some kind, here are some options to consider. (This list is not exhaustive, just a starting point.)
  • Lead another Journey Group with new people
  • Lead a Covenant Group, and bring some Journey principles with you (like accountability, missional living, personal worship skills, etc.)
  • Lead a ministry team for a specific church ministry task (for example, lead a children’s or youth discipleship group, lead a chair crew, ushering team, bereavement team, etc.)
  • Lead an outreach ministry in the community (for example, if you have a heart for widows and you love to quilt, start an outreach ministry and bring others with you)