By: Jonathan Abenti, Connections and Immersion Groups Crew Leader
This fall kicks off a new season at Watermark. We will be starting Immersion Groups! We have been getting questions about Immersion Groups so here are the answers to what a lot of people have been asking.
What is an Immersion Group? Every church has their own name for groups…Life Groups, Cell Groups, Small Groups, Growth Groups… at Watermark we call our groups Immersion Groups. That’s it. Nothing strange. Just a place to come together during the week to eat, support each other, and study the Bible.
Why the Immersion Groups name? We chose the name Immersion Groups for several reasons. First, if you hadn’t noticed, Watermark kind of has a water-theme going. Tsunami Students, H2O Kids, etc. and Immersion certainly fits that theme. Second, the definition of Immersion – going deeper, being deeply engaged or involved. That is what we pray Immersion Groups will help us do – Dive deeper into God’s word and into relationships with others!
Why should I join an Immersion Group? First of all, church can be big and overwhelming. Even in a smaller church, there are 60-80 people there every Sunday. Do you know them all? Do you feel connected to them all? Likely, the answer is no. But in an Immersion Group you can get to know 11 other people and make connections that just aren’t possible on Sunday morning.
Second, Jesus is our example and He was in a small group! Small groups are not an invention of the modern church. Jesus selected 12 men to be His small group. We call Jesus’ small group “disciples” or “apostles.” (Your Immersion Group at Watermark might be called “Deeper, ” “Authentic Men,” or some other catchy name.) He spent time teaching them, eating with them, praying with and for them, and in general, just hanging out and “doing life” together. Your Immersion Group is who you call when something is wrong and you need help. They are who you call when something is right and you want to celebrate. They challenge you to dive deeper into the Bible. They pray for and with you. Just like Jesus did with His small group.
Third, we need to connect with God and each other more often than just Sundays at church. Sunday morning, especially in a church that is portable, does not always lend itself to the best questions and conversations. It can be hard to connect with someone who is rushing in and out of the door carrying heavy trusses or other equipment. Immersion Groups give us the chance to grow deeper relationships with other believers. Immersion Groups also help us grow closer to God by exploring His word in a way that just can’t be done on a Sunday morning. Can you ask questions during a sermon or worship song? Can you share your story about how a particular topic or passage of Scripture affected you? Likely, if you are only attending Sunday morning church, the answer is no. But in an Immersion Group, working together we can figure out the answers to our questions and share our stories to encourage others.
Does the Bible talk about Immersion Groups? While the name “Immersion Groups” isn’t specifically found in the Bible, God does have a lot to say about small groups, regularly meeting together, and building each other up. You can find a selection of Bible passages relating to small groups by clicking here.
How to I get connected to an Immersion Group? There are several ways to get connected to an Immersion Group! First, go to the website and click “Connect” in the menu. From there you can click the Immersion Groups icon and get more information about groups. (A list of fall Immersion Groups is coming soon!)
Second, after service find me (Jonathan Abenti) in the lobby and I will help you get connected to a group, volunteer crew, or any other ministry of Watermark.
Third, hang out after service on 8/28 or 9/4 for our “Dive Deeper” event. This will be an opportunity to find out more about Immersion Groups and Volunteer Crews at Watermark. Leaders will be around to answer questions and you will be able to sign up for an Immersion Group for the fall.
If you have other questions about Immersion Groups, please visit the Immersion Groups page of the website and send me a message via the contact form. I will do my best to answer all your questions. I hope to see you in an Immersion Group at Watermark this fall!