When someone in your small group asks for help in making a decision, be certain group leaders know the difference between simply giving advice and mining the Scripture for godly wisdom — they are very different.
When a small group member asks for counsel on a particular situation, advice giving means someone …
- Gives their opinion concerning what the person should do
- Voices a cliché or pat answer
- Repeats what someone once told him to do in the same situation
- Says nothing when the advice seeker decides what she’s going to do — the silence infers that the person has made the right decision.
Mining for biblical wisdom happens when a group member asks for counsel and someone …
- Suggests the group spend time searching God’s Word to find out the right thing to do
- Quotes passages of Scripture relating to their situation
- Prays with the person asking God to give guidance if no specific direction is found in Scripture
- Who has already experienced the same situation shares how God guided him to the right decision and what the outcome was
- Suggests the group join together, spending time in God’s Word and prayer to discern what is right and good in God’s eyes
It’s important that group leaders know the difference between advice giving and mining for biblical wisdom.
When a group mines for biblical wisdom, group members …
- Learn to use their Bibles to understand and handle everyday life experiences
- Begin to realize that God’s advice is the only perfect advice
- Begin to realize that God’s Word speaks to almost every situation they experience
- Embrace prayer on behalf of one another
- Start to understand that prayer is both talking and listening
Your Bible study group will move closer to being a strong, biblical community when the group continually seeks God together.
Rick Howerton has one passion — to see “a biblical small group within walking distance of every person on the planet making disciples that make disciples.” He is pursuing this passion as the small group and discipleship specialist at Lifeway Church Resources.
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