Are your small group members becoming better informed about the Bible? Great! But are they also being transformed by the Bible?
To ensure growth, application, and change in the lives of small group members, try some of these suggestions:
- Paradigm Shift.Change how you look at the Bible study portion of your meetings. Begin referring to this as "Bible application" time rather than Bible study time.
- Relevant Teaching. Seek out materials that will speak to group members' real and felt needs. Don't assume that your pet topics will also appeal to them; make the effort to discover what they want to learn.
- Biblical Change. Help group members make applications that are biblical. Sometimes our personal opinions and those of our culture sneak into our applications. Hold them up to the light of God's Word.
- Practical Steps. Steer group members toward one or two practical steps that will turn their applications into action. Help them get beyond "I will witness more" to "I will have lunch with Bob this week and tell him how God provided for my son's upcoming surgery." Good applications are specific, practical, and attainable.
- Modeling.Let your group members see you apply Scripture. If your application on a study about servanthood was to plant a flower bed for your disabled neighbor, get one of your group members to help you.
- Establish Accountability. Each week, ask how group members are doing with their applications from the previous week.
- Celebrate Victories. Get excited about positive steps toward Christlikeness. Plan a time to celebrate this whenever you meet.