Is your small group Bible study worth coming back for?
The most important thing about getting into God’s Word is to actually open up the Bible! On our resources page we have a list of some great materials to help you do that. But having a good small group is more than just having good lessons. Think of it like this: You’re turning that group of people into a little family that grows together, and grows in numbers. Here are some tips for making your small group the kind of thing people will want to come back to week after week, and even bring their friends. Some of these are just ways to have fun and build the community, while others are some practical “how to’s” of leading a good discussion about the Bible.
- Go out for ice cream afterwards!
- Living rooms are cooler than classrooms… Meet at someone’s house instead of on campus.
- Use a game to break the ice! Start off by playing “The M&M Game,” “Two truths and a lie,” or “Never have I ever” to help people loosen up and get to know each other. (Google these games and you’ll find how to play.)
- Make it your personal goal to grab lunch individually or in pairs with everyone in your Bible study to get to know them.
- Cook a meal together and have your discussion while you eat it!
- Use Soularium with Culture Questions as an icebreaker.
- Use open-ended questions instead of yes/no questions. Here’s an example: “Did you guys have a good week?” doesn’t start a discussion. But if you ask, “I want to know what’s the most surprising thing that happened to you this week,” that’s more interesting. Similarly, if you ask, “According to this Bible verse, where was Jesus going?” It’s a simple answer: “Jerusalem.” Boom, discussion closed. A better type of question is, “If you were in the disciples’ shoes, what would you be thinking right now?”
- Pray for each other at the end of the Bible study. Ask people how you can pray for them, write down what they say, and keep praying for these things throughout the week!
- Each week, make your last question of the Bible study, “Who do you know that needs to hear what we talked about today? Who can you tell about what we talked about?”
- Do a “soul-to-soul” night. Split up guys and girls, and take an evening where each person can share in an extended length of time who they are, where they come from, and how they’ve come to where they are spiritually. (This is probably after you are a bit closer to each other, because you’re asking people to really open up and be vulnerable. As the leader, you need to be ready to take the lead and model this openness for everyone else.)