“For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.”
A Life Transformation Group (LTG) is a simple way to release the most essential elements of a vital spiritual walk to people who need Jesus. This tool empowers the common Christian to accomplish the uncommon work of reproducing spiritual disciples who can in turn reproduce others. An LTG is made up of two to three people, all of the same gender, who meet weekly for personal accountability in the areas of their spiritual growth and development. A group should not grow beyond three but multiply into two groups of two rather than a single group of four. If a fourth person is added to the group, it is recommended that the group consider itself “pregnant” and ready to give birth to a second group. After the fourth person has demonstrated sufficient faithfulness to the group for two to three weeks, the group should multiply into two groups of two.
Here is a simple overview of what an LTG is:
- LTGs meet once a week for approximately one hour.
- LTGs are groups of two or three (the addition of a fourth person is the beginning of the second group and multiplication is imminent).
- The groups are not co-ed, but gender specific.
- There is no curriculum, workbook or training involved.
- There is no leader needed in the group
- Only three tasks are to be accomplished in an LTG:
- Sin is confessed in mutual accountability
- Scripture is read repetitively in context and community
- Souls are prayed for strategically, specifically, and continuously
The LTG is simple yet powerful. It incorporates the values of community, internal life transformation, and reproduction of disciples.
Who should be in an LTG?
There are only two suggested qualifications for starting or joining an LTG.
- A desperate need for Jesus Christ (Luke 5:29-32).
- Faithfulness in the process itself (2 Tim. 2:2).
These two criteria balance one another to keep the group on track both with healing for hurting people and health for helping people. To compromise either of these principles will slow down or derail the effectiveness of the group.
The Strength of Two or Three:
Here are several Biblical reasons why a smaller of two or three is better than a larger group when it comes to making and multiplying disciples:
- Community (Eccl. 4:9-12): Life change does not occur in a vacuum; it happens in relationship with others. From the beginning God has said that it is not good to be alone. We need each other for strength and support (Prov. 27:17).
- Accountability (1 Tim 5:19): Few things would get done in life without some degree of accountability. The New Testament lists at least twenty eight “one another” commands. There’s no doubt we need one another to live the life Christ intends for us.
- Confidentiality (Matt. 18:15-17): It is easier to maintain confidentiality in a group of only two or three rather than a larger group of ten or twelve. The Lord specifically designated that two or three is best for the confession of sin.
- Flexibility (Matt. 18:20): It is much easier to coordinate the calendars of only two or three rather than a typical small group of fifteen. An LTG can meet anywhere!
- Reproducibility (2 Tim: 2:2): It is easier to reproduce a smaller, simpler group than a larger and more complex entity. Perhaps that is why the Lord commanded us to make more disciples rather than cell groups or churches (Matt. 28:18-20). Transformed disciples in community are the base unit for the kingdom of God.
There are only three tasks to be accomplished in an LTG. They are …
Sin is confessed in mutual accountability (Ministry Naked)
Christians need one another (Hebrews 10:24-25). There is strength in relationships that are built around supporting one another. The first thing the LTG does together is ask each other Character Conversation Questions (see below). The meetings start here because it is easy to lose time talking about other things. It is also helpful to begin with the confession of sin which tends to sanctify the rest of the meeting. The questions are straight forward. Each person takes turns answering the same question. The group must be a safe place to be honest in. The confession of sin prepares the soil of people’s hearts for the word of God being read each week.
Scripture is read repetitively – in context and in community
The power of the system is in unleashing of God’s word in the lives of people. Jesus made it clear that the word of God is the seed of new life (Luke 8:11, 15). To expect to be changed and bear fruit without first planting the seed is foolish and disappointment will result. Each group decides on a book of the Bible they will read that week. The goal is to create an internal appetite for the rich word of God, so a large volume of scripture is desired. It is recommended that one strive to have 25-30 chapters of reading each week as a goal. Sample reading exercise would be as follows… If the group selects a smaller book such as Ephesians or Jonah, the group should read it five times in a week. A moderate size book, such as Romans or 1 Corinthians can be read twice in a week. A lengthy book, such as Acts or Proverbs can be read once in its entirety in a week. When the group comes together the next week they ask one another if the reading was completed. If any one person was unable to finish the reading that week then the whole does the same reading again for the next week. This is not a bad thing. Reading entire books in repetition, in context and in community will yield a very rich reward! This is one good reason to challenge participants with a larger volume of reading which will likely not be completed each and every week. Thirty chapters tend to take about four weeks for a typical group to finish reading together at the same time and move on to another. Once all complete the reading in the same week they choose the next book to read together. A group can decide together with the next book will be or alternate who chooses the book each time.
Souls are prayed for specifically and regularly (Prayer)
Each member of the LTG is to identify two or three people whom the Lord lays on their hearts that need Jesus. The names of these people are then written down and kept by every member of the group. Each person in the group prays throughout the week for those on the list. It is best to choose one name from the list each day and pray for them. There is a strategic prayer focus listed below. Those who begin to seek Christ become perfect candidates for the next LTG and multiplication of the group can occur naturally and spontaneously and in a way that the whole group can rejoice together.
A downloadable PDF of the Character Conversation Questions can be found HERE.
A downloadable PDF of the Strategic Prayer Focus can be found HERE.
If you need more information regarding Life Transformation Groups at the Vineyard, please contact Sean or Angel Hart.