This teaching tip will apply to leaders of any small group. As you lead your group members in Bible study, be sure to remain positive and encouraging. There are enough negative influences in our lives today, and a Bible study isn’t a place for condescending attitudes, snarky remarks, or rolls of the eyes. As the group’s leader, set the pace and always look for the positive in the things your group members say and do. Here are a few phrases you can use to keep things positive:
• “You’ve asked a great question that I haven’t thought about until now.”
• “What a unique way of looking at this Bible story! Thank you for helping us to see it from your perspective.”
• “That’s a great insight.”
• “That’s a super sharp observation – I can’t believe I didn’t see that!”
• “Thank you for sharing your thoughts with the group. You’ve given us something new and exciting to think about.”
• “Thanks for sharing.”
• “I really like what you just said.”
• “That’s a great way to look at this Bible text.”
• “I wish I’d thought of that.”
• “I think you’d make a great group leader!”
And the list goes on! No matter who speaks up in the group, always find something you can affirm in them. Be an encourager, not someone who inadvertently discourages group members from sharing their thoughts.
Ken Braddy manages Lifeway’s Ongoing Bible studies, leads a Bible study group, and blogs about groups at kenbraddy.com.