We understand that our weekly gatherings as Community Groups are not always the ideal setting to share specific areas of our lives with one another. Often there are weeks when some of us won’t be able to be a part of the gathering because we are watching the children that week, have to work late, or at home with sick kiddos or are even sick ourselves. Knowing all of this to be the case, we encourage each member to be a part of a complementary means of helping each other follow Jesus in every area of our lives through a DNA group.
The term DNA group refers to a group that ideally consist of three people — men with men, women with women — who meet weekly to share what they are learning and how they are growing as believers in Jesus. We believe these groups can create a space to care for one another and bring deeper accountability into our lives. DNA is an acronym that reminds of us three key components of disciple-making:
While we are strongly encouraging each member to be a part of a DNA group, we do not make these groups mandatory. That being said, we do believe that as disciples who’ve been saved and made righteous we are to “be transformed by the renewing of our minds” (Romans 12:2), and that because discipleship requires life-on-life interaction a DNA group can be a key catalyst for growth and transformation in each of our lives.
WHO? — It would be helpful for your DNA group to consist of people from your Community Group. This will help ensure another regular touch point with some of the people in your CG outside of the weekly gathering. It will also allow you to share your heart and your life with a few of the people with whom you are on mission. The nature of group dynamics reveals that every group has a leader and because each DNA group’s make-up will be unique, the nature of the group will determine the type of leadership that’s needed. For some groups, where all participants have similar experience and maturity, the leader will simply be the person who makes sure the group meets. For others, the leader will clearly drive the discussion. Regardless of who initially plays the role of leader, each member of a DNA group should get experience leading within the group.
WHAT? — One of the first steps in forming a DNA group will be to sharing with one another your life-story (family background, salvation testimony, etc.) and where you believe you need to grow in your walk with Christ. During this time you will likely begin to get an idea of where in the Scriptures you as a group should begin to study. The specific discipleship goals for a DNA group meeting can be understood by unpacking the acronym:
You will see below in the list of resources several ideas for DNA group studies.
WHEN? — Because we are not disciples only once a week on Sundays, these groups should seek to find a time during the week when each member is available to gather together. This may happen early mornings or late evenings, over coffee/lunch/dinner or during a walk through the neighborhood. Find a time that you can set aside to push each other to Christ and guard one another from sin (Eph. 4). Focus is a key factor to consider: it will be hard for three moms to have a DNA group meeting while their kids play at the park, so look to meet in a place where everyone is comfortable and reasonably free of distractions.