GDI majors in micro groups as an effective way to accelerate transformation and provide a simple and tested method of multiplying disciples. Here is a quick thumbnail description of a micro group:
What: One person prayerfully invites 2 or 3 others to join them on a journey of maturing in Christ as well as learning to disciple others. The original group multiplies at the completion of Discipleship Essentials by reaching out to 2 or 3 others, making disciples who make disciples. Over a period of years a church is transformed from within organically to the place where the identity of the church is a disciple-making congregation.
Why: Since the mission of the church is to make disciples, we need a specific way to do that. With the experience of over 30 years, we have found this is the most effective means for the average person to accelerate their growth in Christ and then, by experience, learn to reproduce the same experience for others. (Click the "Stories" tab above.)
How: Form a covenant to meet weekly around a discipleship curriculum (such as Discipleship Essentials), growing in transparency while applying God’s word honestly to the growing edges of your life. Disciple-making is fundamentally a relational process of lives sharpening lives. The intentionality of regular gatherings shifts our priorities by making this a centerpiece of our week.
Who: Pursue those of the same gender who seem to have an openness to explore all they can be in Christ regardless of their level of maturity. As a general rule of thumb, a variety of ages and years of experience in Christ only adds to the richness of the life within the group. Gender-specific groups foster transparency.
When: These last two items are very cultural specific and must fit into the patterns of life within a particular country and culture. In the United States or other first world countries we recommend meeting weekly for 90 minutes at a time convenient to the micro group members. Approximately 30 minutes of time is devoted to personal sharing and while the remaining time is used to cover the curricular content (this also usually leads back to personal application.)
Where: Again, this will vary by countries and cultures. Find a place where there is freedom to be transparent about your life (quiet nook of a restaurant, private home, office boardroom, church, etc.).
For a more complete discussion of the core characteristics and practical implementation of micro groups see Chapters 6-10 of Transforming Discipleship: Making Disciples a Few at a Time (InterVarsity Press, 2016) by Greg Ogden.