And this time, a question for you

When I say the words “small group Bible study”, what does that make you think of? What are your expectations? What sort of experiences have you had? What do you find works well in that sort of set-up? What do you find doesn’t work so well?

And no, I don’t have a “correct answer” written on the back of a card… I just want to hear what others think/feel, what your experience has taught you, what works for you, that sort of thing… And this time I actually invite you to say as much as you like. The floor is yours!

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2 thoughts on “And this time, a question for you

  1. Hmmm, I suppose a basic would be time spent studying the Bible. Sometimes there’s singing. Usually there’s a time of group prayer, or we’ve broken down into smaller groups to pray. Once I was in a group that read a book together rather than studied a book of the Bible. (It was about being Peace Making Women.)

    My main expectation is that everyone will be expected and welcomed to participate in a discussion about the text. I was shocked when I moved to San Francisco and joined the Bible study that Rob lead and found out that he talked most of the time. It was more like listening to a sermon than studying all together. Everyone else seemed to think that’s how things should be. Needless to say, our first discussions about Bible studies as a married couple didn’t go over too well. I ended up not attending his Bible study because it drove me nuts. He slowly started to learn to ask questions and draw people into conversation. It took many, many years before he got good at that. I think when push comes to shove, he still prefers teaching to encouraging a group discussion.

    For the most part, I’ve had pretty good experiences with small group studies. People tend to be pretty open about how they interact with the text and how they’re doing in their lives. Sometimes I get frustrated because I feel like people are just skimming things, but that’s much more the exception than the rule.

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    • Yes, I’ve also been discovering that people have different ideas of what a group Bible study entails – a bit like you, I was pretty stunned to discover that there are those who treat it more as a lesson rather than an opportunity for group discussion. I wonder if there are people who find that helpful – maybe it works for some. I know that for me, being able to think for myself about issues and engage with other people’s ideas – whether we agree or not – is a much more helpful way of learning.

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