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You Can Begin a Spirit-Led Home Group!

Mark Virkler's picture

Do you hunger for meaningful life-giving relationships with others traveling this road called life? Have you tried to forge these relationships and found it frustrating, if not impossible? You get into a small group, and it is boring, or a sharing of ignorance, or non-guided and always running off on bunny trails, or someone dominates the group so others can’t share. So what do you do? Where do you go? How can you find or create a small group where meaningful relationships are established?

Three Training Options. Which Option Is Best for You and Your Group? 

Option One - 20 Fun-Loving, Interactive, Revelation-Based Training Modules 

These courses utilizing hard copy books, CDs and DVDs will train you in Bible knowledge and Christian spirituality, equipping you for greater effectiveness in all of life.

These materials are available from Communion With God Ministries and can be used in independent study or in a small group.

Small groups are encouraged to utilize this training material and learn to minister in the power of the Holy Spirit.

Option Two -  E-Learning modules through CLU School of the Spirit which can result in a Diploma in Applied Spirituality.  

Nine modules allow you to Master the Bible and nine additional modules train you how to live by the Spirit. Each is downloadable. These interactive, practical, life-changing courses can be purchased individually or as a complete bundle. Experience session one free by clicking here

Christian Leadership UniversityOption Three -  Earn a degree through Christian Leadership University, which provides 100+ correspondence courses that are revelation-based and culminate in degrees from associate through doctorate in 14 life-changing areas.

The New Testament Pattern for the Church Includes Small Groups

  1. 20/20 Vision – Large group and small groups functioning hand-in-hand (Acts 20:20)
  2. Goal of small groups – Place where Christians mature in the operation of the gifts of the Spirit (1 Cor. 12:7-11) and practice the "one another" commands.
  3. Fruit of small groups – Individuals' needs are supernaturally met, the Church grows, the Kingdom is extended

What experiences are offered within the small group?

  1. Spiritual transformation through teaming up (Eccl. 4:9-12) and focusing intently (Jas. 1:25) 
  2. Revelation as you honor the Holy Spirit's leadership in the meeting (Jn. 14:26)
  3. Exploration as you nurture a climate in which people can grow in release of the “gifts” of the Spirit

What kinds of resources are utilized by Spirit-led home groups?

  1. Worship resources  
  • Worship may or may not be a part of your small group – your decision
  • Use worship CDs if you don’t have a Spirit-led musician
  • Throne room worship incorporating vision, Holy Spirit flow, freedom, celebration, dance and prophetic gestures
  1. Teaching resources
  • They must be revelatory (explained here)
    • Training which was birthed through revelation
    • Passed on to students in a revelatory manner, so each one hears from God
  • Teaching which was forged in real life victories
    • Came from the trainers’ real life struggles, revelation and successes
    • Deals with participants’ real life challenges, offering solutions
  • Experiential, where you disciple people in cultivating specific skills
    • Focus for three months on acquiring one new spiritual skill – don’t rush
    • Provide a safe atmosphere to experiment, try, fail and try again
    • Celebrate victories as well as failures. Failures are simply stepping stones along the path to victory. Keep it fun!

Let’s get our home group started!

  1. First steps in getting your small group started
  • Find a home with the gift of hospitality (Lk. 10:6)
  • Find an administrator (apostle) to oversee and lead
  • Churches are encouraged to promote Spirit-led groups
    • Free Market home groups – re-created every 12 weeks
    • Sunday School is a possible time slot
    • Mid-week training experiences is a good time slot
  1. The meeting includes the following
  • Worship time is optional – depends on group and situation
  • Teaching time – Spirit-anointed delivery of revelation-based truth
  • Encounter time – where students are led into experiencing the truth
  • Ministry time
    • 2-3 people gather around each person who requests prayer and pray, using the gifts of the Holy Spirit.
    • Are encouraged to tune to flowing thoughts, visions and emotions as they pray, thus releasing words of wisdom, knowledge, discerning of spirits, healing and miracles.
  • Testimonies shared of what happened (now or at the following meeting)
  • Optional – fellowship, refreshments or a meal (at beginning or end of meeting)
  1. Involve everyone
  • Help people discover and multiply spiritual giftings (discussed here)
  • Use everyone in their gifts – hospitality, service, administration, teaching, counseling, prayer
  1. Blog: Leadership Teams Led by the Spirit

Three Examples of Spirit-Led Home Groups

Revelation-based focus groups where you team up & focus  by Mark Virkler

The activities below can come in any order, and some may be skipped. The rule is to follow Spirit flow. The leader is to see that all individuals’ gifts are utilized in the area of their giftedness.

  1. Throne room worship may or may not be a part of these meetings.
  2. Exercise of spiritual gifts: We have a time of prayer for people’s needs, where 2-4 gather around a person with a prayer need, and tune to the Spirit (flowing thoughts, pictures and emotions), and pray/speak these things to the individual, often with the laying on of hands. Forgiveness, repentance, healing, inner healing, deliverance and encouragement should be customary.
  3. Delight-centered learning: Groups disband every 12 weeks and new “focus groups” form on topics of interest, as is modeled in these free market small groups. Learning is to focus on real life skills. Revelation-based DVDs may be used during the teaching element. Not only must the material be revelation based and proven out in real life, its delivery must utilize a revelation-based learning style where the Holy Spirit reveals truth to one’s heart.
  4. Sharing of revelation - When it comes to small groups, I dislike boring lectures as much as I do the sharing of ignorance (i.e. when people share their thoughts without prayerful reflection first - Jas. 3:15-17). So we assign Scriptures to journal about the week before and then when we gather, the leader oversees a lively, Spirit-anointed discussion. Each participant is to be drawn into sharing their revelations and no one is allowed to dominate. They share what God has revealed to them during their week’s meditation, noting specifically how it has impacted their lives as they have put it into practice, and/or any blocks that hindered them from putting it into practice. The goal is to ride the wave of the Spirit (i.e. following flow) as people share, building upon what each is saying. This is a skill the leader must develop.
  5. A three month focus allows transformation to occur: By focusing intently (Jas. 1:25) as a group (Eccl. 4:12) for 12 weeks, we can acquire a new spiritual skill. Einstein said: “Information is not knowledge. The only source of knowledge is experience.” Scripture confirms that true knowledge is when revelation transforms a person (2 Pet. 1:8). Note the following testimony. “It has been awhile since I got all the material and I finally made time to do a focused in depth study and it has been a real blessing. Even my children are now sharing their dreams and they are journaling with us and the Lord has spoken a lot through my daughter of 10 and my son 4.”
  6. Light refreshments and fellowship are generally a part of these small group gatherings, sometimes even a meal.
  7. Children generally are not present. If present they could play or participate.

Home Groups in India – by Steve Stewart

On Sunday morning I attended my first house church meeting. I have read about such meeting for years, but never seen one. I am not talking about a home group or a church that meets in a house but is essentially structured like a regular Sunday service with worship, announcements, teaching and prayer ministry. (Those I have seen led and participated in for over 35 years.) What I witnessed was something else entirely.

For about 2 1/2 hours (the time flew by), with no leader directing the action, person after person shared a testimony, a song, a prayer, a scripture, a teaching or encouragement; one lady even shared a remarkable parable. No one asked for testimonies or anything else; people just spontaneously shared. The Apostle Paul told the Corinthians that when the church gathers each one has something to contribute (1 Cor. 14:26). This is what I saw.

Each of these people (about 45 of them) were constantly winning others to the Lord through taking the time to be building new relationships and in this context of care, introducing them to Jesus. Many testified of meeting the Lord through the kindness of a stranger who became a brother or sister. I heard many testimonies of remarkable healings and deliverance. Two women shared about raising the dead. One lady raised a man from the dead simply by preaching the Gospel over his body until he opened his eyes and sat up!

Another lady shared excitedly about the 22 people she baptized in a day. Another shared that she had asked the Lord for 300 disciples (new believers who make other disciples). She announced that since she had now done that, she was asking for 3,000 more disciples. All over the room they spoke out how many disciples they were asking the Lord for in the next month. The smallest number I heard was 5, the highest was 40––for one month. The meeting ended with communion and taking a meal together.

I experienced the New Testament church life that Acts and the epistles describe. It was so exciting in many ways: a truly Holy Spirit-led gathering with no human leader; testimonies of miracles, salvations; many short and powerful teachings from the Scripture; worship that was free and spontaneous. As person after person contributed, the atmosphere became charged with faith and thanksgiving for all that Jesus was doing.

...all the while praising God and enjoying the goodwill of all the people. And each day the Lord added to their fellowship those who were being saved. (Acts 2:47)

A Home Church – by Mike Tayler                   

Fifteen years ago Lifebridge Ministries started their first meeting as a few people just getting together in our home twice a month for a Bible study.  After a few meetings, one meeting night no one came so with disappointment, Terri and I went for a walk when we heard the voice of God say, "I was there.” Since then we have never looked at numbers for it's about who He brings to the meetings and about His agenda, not ours.

We have saved and non-saved attend. The non-saved leave saved. Every meeting is different. A word that came forth in one meeting was that the manna God gave at that meeting could not go to the next but there would always be new manna. Every meeting is different.

Most of the time we start with worship although sometimes worship is at the end. After 2 or 3 songs we have the body share the visions and words they received during worship. If you put the words and visions together, you can discern the theme the Holy Spirit has for that meeting. Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks, so if you want to hear what God wants to do that night, listen to the body.

People are so hungry for freedom and been so stifled in being able to release their gifts, that at first you really need to somewhat pull on the gifts and then tell them they need to exercise the gifts because if you want more you need to give more. It’s a principle. It’s really a joy to see the body really begin to flow the way it was designed to, utilizing the full operation of the gifts of the Holy Spirit.

Once someone described a vision they had during worship and a young girl, who was in attendance for the first time and who was sitting on the other side of the room, started weeping because it set her free from what she was going through. 

So many that come have really been beat up by the organized church, the enemy, and circumstances of life and this is the first time in many years that they have felt genuine love without condemnation, shame and judgment. God has taught us to love unconditionally.

We have found that when someone gives a word of knowledge, that person also carries the power (virtue) to pray for the fulfillment of that word of knowledge, and as they pray, people are set free.

We have learned to go with spontaneous thoughts and found they come from God.  One night well into the meeting a seven year old girl went into the center of the room and started dancing so freely.  A thought came to me that she was to pray for everyone that night. I held her up as she prayed for all and everyone was hit by the power and lay on the floor.

If you really trust the Holy Spirit, He may have you do unusual things that if you rationalize about, you will talk yourself out of it and miss God’s will. We are to walk by the Spirit and most of the western church has stopped at the baptism in the Holy Spirit and speaking in tongues. There is so much more.

Whether I am a Pastor, Evangelist, Prophet, Teacher or Apostle, in the home meetings my primary role is to be an orchestrator of the Holy Spirit's actions, blending all parts of the body together.  When as a body we listen and obey the Holy Spirit, we discover that we are doing that which we see our Father doing. The Spirit has counseled us and as we obey, His Spirit of might and power is released in our midst.

To those who desire to start a home meeting I would say if the desire is there then you are well on your way. He says delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart. He will impart to you the desires of His heart, and they become the desires of your heart.  Next there must be agreement. The place of agreement is the place of power. Agree with the Holy Spirit. Agree with your spouse. Know that the enemy will try to get you and your spouse into disagreement just before a meeting.  

Never look at numbers. Love the people where they are at and the Holy Spirit will be the one to change them.  Remember that there are many things involved in healing and as much as there is healing in the physical, there is just as much (if not more) in the emotional. Have fun and enjoy God!! 

Mike can be contacted here: [email protected].           

Richard Bartels describes his experience in Mike’s home meetings: I have been to numerous meetings and have seen many different styles of meetings and churches. Some are structured and some not so structured. So, for me to attend a meeting is one thing I enjoy especially when recommended by a friend. A personal friend recommended Mike Taylor's home meeting in Lindstrom.

I went the first time and was touched by the way the Holy Spirit was present like never before. I have attended regularly as much as possible. The thing I like about Mike's home meeting is the freedom. Mike lets the body function in a corporate way with the Holy Spirit working through each and every one of us. There is no way to describe the anointing that is present. You simply need to attend.

I come expecting, yet not knowing what to expect. Every week is different. So I lay aside my expectations and simply watch the Holy Spirit move in every area of my life. These home meetings are a reflection of Mike’s faith. They are explosive and contagious.