Which book will help your small group best?
Looking to start a small group? Already have a group and looking to take it deeper in God? The Way has a couple books for you to consider:
Gordon MacDonald's Going Deep
Rick Warren's Better Together
Both of these books are about growing deeper in God and both offer insights into how to make your group the best it can be. Beyond that initial purpose, these two books are completely different. Each of these books has its pros and cons, but which is better suited for your small group and its development? Check out our brief analysis below and make your own decision:
Both of these books address the need for small groups and reveal the effectiveness of them.
Going Deep provides great insight into how a small group comes to be through its narrative style. However, the lack of conflict and challenges in the narrative leaves the reader without a truly realistic view of small groups and the challenges that come with them. As a result, an individual looking to start a small group could easily get discouraged if they only read this book before trying to get a small group started. This flaw takes away from the very thorough description of what it takes to statr a small group, which surpasses most others in terms of depth and detail.
Better Together does not provide the insights needed to starting a small group, but it does provide small groups new and old with quality material to get them growing deeper and more effective in their walk with God. It's devotions, while varying in depth, offer the group thoughtful ideas and suggestions to operating more effectively in God's Kingdom. If a group leader can keep the reigns on the potential rabbit trails, this 40 day devotional can take a small group to new depths in God.
Definitely buy Better Together if you are looking to get your small group more active and deeper involved in the Kingdom of God. It can also be used by churches across multiple ministries (i.e. youth, adult, young marrieds, etc.)
Consider getting Going Deep just for the detail they spend on starting the group. However, the actual group dynamic and development portrayed in the book is misleading in its ease of application in the real world.
Chris Farris is the author of The Way, a manual detailing how to implement the Beatitudes into your life. He review events and other media and offers other insights into writing and working for the Kingdom of God.