What Happens When Your Group Prays

By Zack DeBerry

The last few weeks at Journey we have been talking about Prayer in the context of “what to do when we don’t know what to do.” We all have those moments in life where life hands us more than we think we can handle. Whether that is a family situation, job situation, life situation, whatever it may be, there are moments we all face that create this tension in our lives when we don’t know where to turn or what to do. It’s in those moments where we have this amazing invitation as followers of Christ to engage in conversation with God.

Prayer really is a conversation with God, and as we converse and commune with Him, we must understand that we have access to God the Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit as we pray. Not only do we have access to the trinity, but they are working to intercede and empower as we engage in this conversation. That is an amazing gift that God has given us as followers of Christ. Not only do we have access to the God head, but God gives us other believers as a community called the church that join with us as we engage in this conversation with God.

At Journey we call this community Life Groups and it is our belief that as we walk through life and face the various challenges we encounter, this small group of people that God gives us partners with us as we pray and seek God’s will in our life. There are some incredible benefits when we join with others in Prayer. Here are just 3 great things that happen when we join with our Group in Prayer.

1. More Power

In Matthew 18 Jesus begins a discussion about how to deal with other believers, and at the end of this discussion he talks about the power that can come from joining together with other believers in Prayer. In Matthew 18:18-20 Jesus states this:

18“I tell you the truth, whatever you forbid on earth will be forbidden in heaven, and whatever you permit on earth will be permitted in heaven.
19“I also tell you this: If two of you agree here on earth concerning anything you ask, my Father in heaven will do it for you. 20For where two or three gather together as my followers, I am there among them.”

What Jesus is saying is that when we have troubles and take the time to Pray with other believers we have access to incredible power.

2. God gets More Fame

When we partner with others in prayer we get the incredible opportunity to see God’s glory displayed as He works in our lives. When we see God at work we are able to see God get more glory and fame in other’s lives. Paul shares an incredible story of how by having other believers praying with him in his ministry, God was able to get incredible glory. 2 Corinthians 1:8-11 has this to say:

8″We think you ought to know, dear brothers and sisters, about the trouble we went through in the province of Asia. We were crushed and overwhelmed beyond our ability to endure, and we thought we would never live through it. 9In fact, we expected to die. But as a result, we stopped relying on ourselves and learned to rely only on God, who raises the dead. 10And he did rescue us from mortal danger, and he will rescue us again. We have placed our confidence in him, and he will continue to rescue us. 11And you are helping us by praying for us. Then many people will give thanks because God has graciously answered so many prayers for our safety.”

What an incredible thing it is to share in the burdens of others in prayer and to celebrate as God shows up in their lives.

3. It Unites His Church

Lastly, when we Pray with other believers we are able to see what God promised in His church- Unity and togetherness. It is an amazing thing to practice unity in our lives with other believers, and prayer with others is one area where this unity can be seen. In Acts, we see the first accounts of God’s Church, and early in this account we see the power of unity in prayer on display. In Acts 1 we read this about the early church:

14They all met together and were constantly united in prayer, along with Mary the mother of Jesus, several other women, and the brothers of Jesus.

Then later as the church continues to grow, we read this in Acts 2:

42All the believers devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching, and to fellowship, and to sharing in meals (including the Lord’s Supper), and to prayer.

It was no secret that Unity and Prayer were an essential part to the incredible growth that the early church experienced. That same opportunity is ours when we partner with other believers in prayer.

The beauty of Life Groups is that you always have someone you can count on to join with you in prayer during the tough times of life, whatever they may be. When we join with others in Prayer we have the great gifts of added power to our prayer and the incredible opportunity to see God glorified as we unite in common purpose in prayer.

My GroupLink Story

By Chris Denning

This Sunday evening, we’re hosting an event at Journey called GroupLink that’s designed to help you connect with others and find a LifeGroup. We’ve been talking about it non-stop recently because we believe that one of the best opportunities for you to see change and growth in your own life is in the context of a LifeGroup.

I know how intimidating or even scary it can seem to walk into a room full of mostly strangers with the idea of being in a group with some of these folks. Sounds kinda nuts when you break it down like that.

However, I’ve heard story after story of people who took a chance and have found some of their closest friends as a result of simply going to GroupLink.

I wanted to share with you my own GroupLink story and what happened as a result, and I hope this helps you to take the chance and attend GroupLink this Sunday evening. (You can register at the bottom of this post.)

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3 Reasons Your Last Life Group Stunk

By Zack DeBerry

One of the things I value at Journey is the push to get people connecting with each other beyond just the Sunday morning service. One of the ways that we do this at Journey is through Life Groups. Many people may have never tried a Life Group before and have no idea what it can mean to be involved in a Life Group.

I also know a lot of people that have tried a Life Group and it was NOT a great experience for them. For those who have never tried a Life Group I want to encourage you to take a step toward community at Journey. For those that have maybe given up on finding a Life Group I hope that you will give them another chance.

Check out these 3 reasons why your Life Group experience may have stunk or could stink right now:
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6 Ways to Get the Most Out of Life Group

By Zack DeBerry

At Journey, we believe that Community and Life Change happen best in the context of a small environment that we call Life Groups.  The hard truth that we have to realize is that in order for Community and Life Change to happen, there are some things YOU MUST commit to do individually.

By the way, we are having a GroupLink on Sunday, Feb 8 at 5:30pm at Journey Church, where you can meet new people, and leave with a brand new Life Group that night!  CLICK HERE to Register for GroupLink.

The truth is that Life Groups are incredible and they can be work, which means they demand something from YOU.  Here are 6 ways to make sure that you are getting the MOST out of your Life Group experience.

1. Show Up

The first and maybe most obvious way to get the most from Life Groups is to SHOW UP.  It should go without saying that if YOU are not there YOU will not experience the Community and Life Change that is possible.

In an overly scheduled society, it means that we must make Life Group and Community with others a priority in our life.  Hebrews 10 talks about the importance of meeting together in Community for encouragement to get through the tough times in our lives.

And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.

Hebrews 10:25 (NLT)

2. Share Humbly

It’s not enough to just show face, but YOU must be willing to share your life, thoughts, and opinions with others that are a part of the Life Group.  This is done in a humble and gentle way and with the attitude of both sharing and learning from others.

We are all trying to get through this life together.  The Bible has much to say about not being too proud or selfish to give yourself to a Community.

Live in harmony with each other. Don’€™t be too proud to enjoy the company of ordinary people. And don’t think you know it all!

Romans 12:16 (NLT)

Don’€™t be selfish; don’€™t try to impress others.  Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves.  Don’€™t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too.

Philippians 2:3-4 (NLT)

3. Show Respect

One of the things that goes a long way in developing authentic Community in Life Groups is showing respect to others.  No one has ever experienced life change and community in the context of a “heated debate”. We must be respectful and realize that many people are looking for answers, they don’t all have them yet.

Accept other believers who are weak in faith, and don’€™t argue with them about what they think is right or wrong.

Romans 14:1 (NLT)

4. Be Honest

If there is one place where we should be able to be honest about our life it should be in the presence of other Christians.  It’s easy to show up, to share humbly, to show respect.

What turns a social gathering into an authentic community is when we drop the facade and get honest about our triumphs and our trials.  The truth is we are all fighting the “Good Fight” of faith and we all need people to fight along side us.

But if we are living in the light, as God is in the light, then we have fellowship with each other, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, cleanses us from all sin.  If we claim we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and not living in the truth.

1 John 1:7-€“8 (NLT)

5. Show Concern For Others

What I love most about Life Groups is that they help us realize that they are not alone.  If we are the body of Christ that the Bible talks about, then we should care for others and offer support to those in need.  A Life Group becomes a Community and Family when we begin to show concern for others.

Share each other’™s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ.

Galatians 6:2 (NLT)

If one part suffers, all the parts suffer with it, and if one part is honored, all the parts are glad.

1 Corinthians 12:26 (NLT)

6. Be Accountable & Hold Others Accountable

Finally, Life Groups provide a level of care and accountability that’s found nowhere else in your life.  It is a lot harder to skip a meeting if you know YOUR Community will be holding you accountable to your commitment.  We need each other if we are to experience life to the full as Jesus intended us to.

Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works.

Hebrews 10:24 (NLT)

When we get together, I want to encourage you in your faith, but I also want to be encouraged by yours.

Romans 1:12 (NLT)

Again, DO NOT miss out on your opportunity to jump into a Life Group at GroupLink on Feb 8, at 5:30pm.  Click Here to Register, and find out what it means to experience true community in a Life Group at Journey!