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Joel Comiskey Group
Resourcing the Worldwide Cell Church 
July 2015 Newsletter

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JCG News

Joel Comiskey's new book: 2000 Years of Small Groups 
($10.95 for this 295 page book)

Ebook:  2000 Years of Small Groups 

New: 27 videos on cell church from Joel Comiskey
There are 27 videos on all aspects of cell church (with downloadable resources) on Ministry Grid. Check it out.

Free Ebook byJoel Comiskey and small group health assessment
Free Ebook from Joel Comiskey (Making Disciples in the 21st Century Church). Joel's book is available at the end of the Thriving Small Groups Assessment. There is no catch to this. We are not asking for your contact information or trying to up-sell anything. At the end of the assessment, you will also discover the health of your small groups. I think you'll find both of this free resources extremely helpful. 

JCG offers coaching
Do you need help with your cell ministry? Perhaps you are making a transition to cell ministry and would like a coach to help you in the process. Or maybe you're planing a new cell church. For more information on receiving coaching, please email us or call 1-888-511-9995. 

Joel Comiskey ministry in June 2015
--From June, 8-11, 2015 Celyce and I will be ministering in Campo Grande, Mato Grosso Brazil. This is a cell seminar at Primeira Igreja Batista de Campo Grande (Pastor Gilson). Contact person: Pastor Gilson 
--From June 12-14, 2015, Celyce and I will be in Sao Paulo, Brazil with Robert Lay. Contact person: Robert Lay
--From June 19-20, 2015, my daughter, Nicole, and I will be in Long Island, New York. This is a Spanish cell conference with Mario Vega in the Church of the Nazarene (Pastor Magdiel Diaz). Contact person: Pastor Magdiel

Major 2016 JCG Event 
--We will have our annual JCG event in the Elim Reseda Church, on February 27, 2016. Mario Vega and Joel Comiskey will be ministering in Spanish and simultaneous English translation will be available. Place it on your calendar/

Read chapters of Joel's 2013 book,
Making Disciples in the 21st Century Church
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2015 Seminar Schedule

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The Secret of Cell Ministry

by Joel Comiskey

What is the secret of cell ministry? Pastors and leaders are often asking this question. I talked with a pastor recently who wondered why the church had the same number of cells for two years. He wanted me to share with his leaders something that would get them out of their stagnation. He wanted me to give them a key, a spark, just something that would push the cells forward.  

This pastor is not alone. Some cell church models promise rapid growth. All you have to do is to follow what the mother church is doing exactly and your church will grow, your cells will multiply, and you will be successful. I've noticed that most  models try to add something new and different that no one else is doing to distinguish their model from the other churches. The idea is that when you adopt their model and add this new feature, your church will grow and become relevant once again.  

The G12 model was like this. The secret of G12 was the number 12. There was a special anointing in finding 12 disciples. After reaching 12, something extraordinary would happen. Things would change for the better. We still see this secret mentality today in the cell church world.  

So what is the secret to cell ministry?  

The secret is that there is no secret. The secret is passion and perseverance. The secret is not giving up. It's getting on your knees daily, seeking God, and then following his directions. It's implementing basic, biblical principles until those principles work. It's refusing to look at magical formulas for growth and  "anointed" models. 

It means knowing why  you are committed to cell ministry (e.g., the biblical foundation) and then following those biblical principles long-term. It means allowing time-tested principles common to worldwide cell churches to inform what you are doing, while asking the Holy Spirit to apply those principles to your particular context. 

And the process will not be easy. You'll have to count the cost each day. Jim Collins in the book Good to Great  says, "In building greatness, there is no single defining action, no grand program, no one killer innovation, no solitary lucky break, no miracle moment. Rather, the process resembles relentlessly pushing a giant, heavy flywheel in one direction, turn upon turn, building momentum until a point of breakthrough and beyond" (p. 34). Yes, you will reach that breakthrough point if you don't give up. 

My book Passion and Persistence  is about the Elim Church, one of the largest churches in the world. The "secret" of Elim is passion that comes from the Holy Spirit and persistent hard work until there's a breakthrough. Their example matches my own research which discovered that fruitful cell leaders possessed two characteristics: prayer and hard work. 

All this seems embarrassingly simple, but it's true.  The reality is that growth comes through diligent prayer, working hard, and then not giving up. The secret is that there is no secret!

During the month of July, we'll be exploring the topic of the real "secret" behind cell ministry (prayer and hard work). Key leaders will blog on this topic, sharing their convictions and experiences. If you'd like to receive these blogs in your email inbox each day, please sign up HERE

  • Week 1 (July 07-13); The secret is that there is no secret. During this week, we'll cover the general theme that the secret of cell ministry is prayer and hard work. 
  • Week 2 (July 14-20); Start with correct motivations. The first thing is to know is that cell church ministry is biblical. It's New Testament house to house ministry. It's the way Jesus chose to make disciples. Now just do it. Run with it. Don't look back.
  • Week 3 (July 21-27);  Dangers of the secret. We'll look at why it's so easy to follow a formula. Like miracle diets that promise weight loss without any pain, cell church models offer growth without effort. One sad side-effect is discouragement and then rejection of the cell strategy altogether when the miracle model doesn't work as planned. 
  • Week 4: (July 28-August 04); The keys to cell ministry are following the biblical motivation, applying time-tested principles, praying diligently, and then working hard. The keys are: passion and persistence; Prayer and diligence.  

What is your reaction to the fact that the secret is that there is no secret? Please comment here.   

Joel Comiskey