For those of you who don't know, I am a preacher of the Gospel of Christ. Furthermore, I preach with a congregation (notice the with) that is...small. Now, don't get me wrong we are larger than some congregations but by and large we are small in numbers, but does that really matter? Let's look at the first chapter of 1 Corinthians to see home helpful things to keep in mind as we live, work and walk amongst small groups of the Lord's people.
We Are Not Alone
"To the church of God which is at Corinth, to those who are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called saints, with all who in every place scall on the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours:" - 1 Cor. 1:2
Sometimes brethren allow themselves to beat themselves up thinking that they are all alone, especially if they are the only congregation in their community, county or even larger region. But the wonderful thing is, we have brethren all over the world with the same mind seeking to follow the Christ and His teachings regardless of their location.
Now, how can that really help a small congregation? One word, "RESOURCES"! Never forget that we can call on brethren to help smaller congregations at times in order to fulfill the will of God. Have a meeting/revival coming up? - Call the local congregations and speak to the elders expressing your wish that they come and gather with you to encourage the small congregation in the area, what can it hurt?\
We Are Not "Almost There"
"I thank my God always concerning you for the grace of God which was given to you by Christ Jesus, that you were enriched in everything by Him in all utterance and all knowledge," - 1 Cor. 1:4-5
Here's my favorite! Regardless of the size of a congregation, God's grace is much larger than the group will ever be! No Christian receives a smaller amount of the grace of God, especially not because of his location and membership of a congregation that has 2 or 2,000. After all, God isn't one to show partiality when it comes to race (Acts 10:34) so why would he be when it comes to the number of people in those races?
This might just be the hardest thing for brethren in smaller congregations to understand. I know I have thought it as well. "If we could just get ____ members we would be more pleasing to God." We may not say it in those words, but that's the meaning of our thoughts. But the great thing is the fact that a congregation is pleasing to God when they are following the commands of Christ (John 14:15) and heading the warnings of Him (Revelation 2:7).
"Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul?" - 1 Cor. 1:13
Have a bunch of cards or flyers for an upcoming revival? Work together to pass them out. Have roles that need to be filled in order to make the congregation work effectively? Work together! Remember, we aren't alone in the world but we also aren't alone in the congregation.
We all have the same God, same grace, same brethren and same job. - So let's forget about the numbers on the board at the front of the auditorium or the black, or red, numbers on the bank statement and start thinking more about how to effectively work together in order to get the Gospel to the entire area (P.S. - Small churches, in my opinion, ought to focus on their area instead of others. We've got a lot of work to do right here.) and save those lost souls!