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Prepping a Discussion

Here are some ideas for small group leaders to consider when preparing discussion questions. (courtesy of LifeHack)



Questions That Control Communication

Starter Question (via Liz Strauss). Try these question if you’re unsure of where to begin:

  • What do you do when you’re not doing this?
  • What is important to you?

Direct Questions. These are questions you ask based on some knowledge of the person. You use these to steer the conversation in the direction that you want. Some examples:

  • How is it that you are so passionate about this topic?
  • How could I accomplish what you have accomplished?
  • Where did you get such a lovely jacket?

Follow Up Questions. These questions are the ones you use to dig deeper into the conversation.

  • Do you remember how you felt when that happened?
  • Can you elaborate a little bit on this topic?
  • Do you remember what was going on in your mind at that time?

Some Tips

  • Appeal To All Senses. When interacting with someone, ask question that appeal to all their senses. This will make you more interesting and most importantly memorable.
  • Be Sincere, Be Interested. If you’re going to ask questions, it would help if you had a sincere interest in the person. Not being sincere and faking interest could very well be taken as an insult.
  • Pay Attention. If you’re interested in crafting brilliant follow up questions then this is a crucial step. Use what the person says, to steer the conversation deeper into whatever direction you like.
  • Ask Open Ended Questions. If you’re goal is to keep the person talking and open up to you, then ask questions that require more than just a yes or no answer.

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20 Questions to Build Group Connections

Here is a great exercise for a new group. The instructions are pretty simple. Go around the group giving each person the opportunity to choose one question and answer it honestly. Anyone can follow-up with an opinion or clarifying question (no critiquing each other's answers, though). Once a question has been answered, no one else may answer that question.

If your group is larger, you may want to alter the rule and allow each question to be answered 2 or 3 times. Ideally, each person should end up answering 3-5 questions.

As the leader, pay attention to the conversation. Let the discussion run its course as this is how people in the group build their relationships with one another. You can use these questions, modify them or create your own.


21 Bible Passages With Which Every Small Group Leader Should Be Familiar

Matthew 5:23-24.
23"Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, 24leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your gift.

Luke 10:1-11.
1After this the Lord appointed seventy-two[a] others and sent them two by two ahead of him to every town and place where he was about to go. 2He told them, "The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field. 3Go! I am sending you out like lambs among wolves. 4Do not take a purse or bag or sandals; and do not greet anyone on the road.

5"When you enter a house, first say, 'Peace to this house.' 6If a man of peace is there, your peace will rest on him; if not, it will return to you. 7Stay in that house, eating and drinking whatever they give you, for the worker deserves his wages. Do not move around from house to hous…