Asking good questions is an important part of leading a succesful group, but sometimes the best gift you can offer your group is not a question at all, but rather a simple statement. Imagine the following scenario:
You've asked one of your finely crafted questions, and Janice, a young Christian who doesn't usually say very much, gives a hesitating answer, that shows she's on the right track. You can tell by the wrinkled forehead that she has got a lot more thoughts in her mind, but is unsure about her first answer, so has not said any more. So now is your chance to deploy the finest two words in Bible study history.
Are you ready for them?
Take a deep breath and repeat after me:
"Go on"Say these two words out loud now - they will change the face of your home group forever!
These words say loads of things to Jittery Janice, or shrinking Stephen, or hesitant Hannah, or timid Trevor. They tell them:
- You're on the right track
- I'm interested in the thoughts that are in your head - please share them round so that other people can be encouraged by them
- The stage is yours...
It's the equivalent of what some books call an "extending question" - but without the need to think of another question. With the right tone, or even prefacing it with "I think you're on the right track here, go on..."or "That's an interesting idea, go on...", you are encouraging them to speak so they can encourage everyone else.
Most of this post is borrowed from Tim Thornborough. You can read all of his thoughts on this topic by clicking here.