Today I want to talk about study material. The advantages of using the Bible as your source of study material in the group are many. Specifically, the positives of an effectively led Bible discussion is that:
Let’s talk small group meeting format. So, what do you do in a meeting? This subject will be discussed in more detail in subsequent blog posts. However, I simply want to present an overview here. In a typical small group designed to accomplish the purposes I have described elsewhere for small groups, it is recommended that the meeting consist generally of the following (with approximate time frames given): Continue reading
The challenge of children is one of the most difficult to overcome in small group ministry. The options generally are: include them in the meeting, have group childcare somewhere, have individual childcare somewhere, have them in the meeting location separate from the meeting but without childcare. I will discuss the ideal and best solution and while doing so, will explain while the other alternatives are less than ideal. Continue reading
Because a primary purpose of the group is to build relationships and to interact over the Scriptures in such a way as to cultivate spiritual growth, an atmosphere that enhances this is preferred. Therefore, the more the setting can be a home or resemble a home the better. If the small group meets at the church or in another location, a classroom setting should be avoided and whatever possible should be done to re-create a home setting (chairs in circle, couch added, etc.) in order to put people at ease. Continue reading
Meeting time may be dictated by the meeting day chosen, whether it is weekly or biweekly, how long you want the meeting to go, and ultimately by the leader’s schedule or preferences. Those choosing what time works best for them when they are considering joining a group will consider a number of factors including: work schedule and commitments, babysitting schedules, the need for kids to be in bed on a school night, or in the opposite direction, the lack of a commitment on a weekend night. Typically, groups might start anywhere from 6:00 to 7:30 PM. Groups meeting during the day or in the early morning hours would choose the time that is most conducive to the members they are trying to reach.
Let’s talk about meeting days. The day that one holds a small group meeting on is often dictated by what is best for the leader, since the leader has to make the group work and be at every meeting.
The advantage of meeting during the week is that it provides a mid-week spiritual emphasis between Sunday morning services.
The length of your meeting will be dictated by your purposes, by the make-up of your group, and by the logistics of the meeting place or limitations of the leader’s time commitment. Generally, groups meet for 90 minutes or 2 hours. What you can accomplish will of course be dictated by the length of time you meet. Continue reading
How often a group meets is an important consideration and may be determined by church leadership. Frequently, however, the leader may need to decide in advance the desired frequency of the group they will lead. Typically, groups will meet either weekly or bi-weekly. Occasionally groups will also meet monthly. Sometimes the frequency of the group meeting is partially dictated by the overall time period in which the group will be meeting as well as the specific purpose of the group. Continue reading
An essential ingredient for small groups to be successful is for their members to be personally committed to the group and to its purposes.
Perhaps it goes without saying that if a member joins a group and believes it is meeting for some other reason that why it is really meeting, that member will either not continue to come, not be invested in the group, or will be at a minimum disillusioned with the group. Whereas if a member specifically joins a group because they want to be involved in accomplishing the group purposes decided upon in advanced and communicated to them as potential members, they will be personally involved in and committed to that group. Continue reading