The Explosive, Exponential Growth of 3/3 Groups

Tim* and his wife began their first 3/3 Group with 7 other young married couples nearly 7 years ago. Tim had first heard about Zúme from a mentor at the church where he worked, and he had enjoyed the experience of “a different, hands-on approach that made making disciples fun, exhilarating, really practical.” Participants in the couple’s first 3/3 group came from a range of backgrounds, from former Catholics to the unbelieving spouses of believers. 

The 3/3 Group (pronounces “three-thirds”) is not a specific curriculum or reading plan, but rather a pattern of meeting that can be used for home churches or any other small gathering with a focus on God’s plan. It splits the group’s time into three portions: Looking Back at what has happened since their last meeting, Looking Up “for God’s wisdom and direction through Scripture, discussion, and prayer,” and Looking Forward to how they can apply what has been learned. This versatile structure puts the focus not on teaching, but on “allowing the Spirit to speak through Scripture,” through which Tim’s family saw beautiful effects. 

After 11 months, Tim says, “one guy just got it. He started a group, and every other person in the group was like, ‘Oh, wow. If he can do it, then I can do it.’ That turned up the fire, and we started seeing every couple start another group. We saw third and fourth generation groups come out of that experience. And what was so fun was that it was so simple.” The group mainly applied Zúme’s practical tools to reach out to the people whom God had already brought into their lives. 

Tim’s family moved overseas in 2019, but when the global pandemic forced them to return, they started working with a local church, meeting with a group of women to learn together through Zúme. That group led to third generation groups over six months, including a group of women from all over the world: Amenia, Ethiopia, and South Sudan, to name a few. One woman took what she had learned back to her community in South Sudan, where she started 25 groups and saw dozens of people come to Christ. One man that she reached got connected to a Zúme online group where, despite the difficulties of a limited internet connection and language barriers, he got the vision to gather groups of a dozen people at a time under trees and outside refugee camps to share the gospel. Through him, another 25 people came to Christ. 

That first couple’s group reached out to members of their communities, who reached their own communities overseas, who reached their own communities under spreading trees on the border with Uganda. “There’s the person of peace where 30, 60, and 100 times it’s multiplied through them,” Tim says. “Most of the time, God’s already got the people in your life that He wants you to share with.” You don’t have to wait until you’re overseas to share the gospel—you start at home. You start where you are, wherever that may be, and God grows that seed and multiplies those loaves and fish many times over. 

If you want to get started with your own 3/3 group, gather some friends and begin where you are. You can sign up for free to go through our 10-session training together—the 3/3 group is in Session 6—and learn a helpful but versatile structure to guide you through. Start where you are and let God work through your willingness. 

*Names changed for security.

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