We believe that people grow as they discover and share truth together. That’s why the second commitment of a small group host is to show a teaching video and guide the group through a simple discussion. You don’t have to be a Bible expert! In fact, it’s better if you aren’t. You just have to follow the simple steps we outline in this lesson.
Preview the lesson
Each lesson has three parts: a video, a printed summary, and a set of discussion questions. These will be posted online well in advance. Since the lesson is related to the sermon, your preparation begins by listening carefully to the sermon. Jot down some key ideas. There is also a devotional every day related to the campaign. You should follow along and encourage everyone in your group to do so. Then watch the video in advance of your group meeting. Think about the questions. How would you answer them? Review the print summary shortly before your group meets.
The Grid weekly and daily videos can be found at The Grid Series Page.
Each week, we will also post a short video to preview the lesson topic for that week. You can find those videos on YouTube at “Grid” Campaign | Small Group Weekly Previews.
Show the video
Make sure you are all set up to show the video. The easiest way is to stream it from pursueGOD.org or YouTube onto your TV. Or you could show it on a computer. But be sure to test the connections, the sound, etc. before the group meets.
Let the video do the teaching. You don’t have to add anything original or come up with your own little lesson. Just show the video. (As a back-up, just in case the technology doesn’t work, be prepared to recap the main points of the video, using the printed summary provided.)
Ask the questions
Be familiar with the questions. Talk through them out loud in advance so they don’t sound stiff. Here are some tips on how to guide the discussion.
- Don’t be anxious about silence. When you ask a question, give people time to think it over.
- Don’t answer your own questions. Wait for someone to speak up.
- Don’t comment on everything. Make space for the group to comment. One way to draw this out is to say, “What do the rest of you think?”
- Don’t worry about questions you can’t answer. It’s okay to say, “I don’t know.”
Remember, you’re not the teacher or the Bible scholar. What the group needs from you is a discussion facilitator so they can discover the truth together.
Close with a prayer
Many small groups traditionally conclude by taking prayer requests and praying together. But to simplify our groups for this campaign, we recommend that you don’t solicit prayer requests. (If someone takes the initiative to ask for prayer, that’s okay.) And since our groups will have many newcomers – and some people new to faith – let’s make it easy by not asking anyone to pray out loud. When the discussion is over, you might choose to offer a brief prayer. If you do, keep it short and simple. When you’re done, say, “We’re dismissed. Thanks for coming. See you next week. Feel free to hang around for a while.”
- Watch the video together or invite someone to summarize the topic.
- What is your initial reaction to this video? Do you disagree with any of it? What jumped out at you?
- Do you learn best from: reading, watching, listening, or discussing? Explain.
- Why is it important to preview the lesson in advance?
- What are some differences between teaching a Bible lesson versus guiding a discussion?
- What are some of the strengths of the discussion approach?
- What are some pitfalls to avoid as the discussion facilitator?
- What other questions do you have about guiding the discussion in your small group?
- Write a personal action step based on this conversation.