Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Five Questions that kill discussion

a Biblical thought...
"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? (Matthew 6:25-27)

a Book thought...
The purpose of giftedness is stewardship and service, not selfishness. (p34)
a Dave thought... by Terry Powell
Subjective questions
Some small-group leaders unintentionally transfer authority from the Bible to group members by instructing them to look inward for meaning rather than investigating the text.

Long-winded questions
Questions get long when a group leader attempts to stuff several facts into a question so that group members will give the appropriate answer. But that kind of information is more easily assimilated by group members when it is put in the form of introductory statements.

Leading questions
Rather than inciting curiosity, these questions may insult the intelligence of your group members. A leading question sags under the weight of your own opinion or predetermined notion, and the way you ask such a question actually reveals the answer that you want to hear. They usually call for a yes or no response that kills conversation. "Don't you think … " or "Isn't … " are typical ways of beginning a leading question.

Compound questions
Resist the impulse to fling back-to-back questions at your group without waiting for a reply to the first one. Either they will be confused about which question to answer first, or they will forget the first question by the time you finish the second. One question at a time!

Compulsory personal questions
We want small-group participants to reinforce biblical truths with anecdotes from their lives. We want them to reveal needs exposed by God's Word so the group can pray specifically for them. Yes, transparency is a vital sign of small-group health. But it's a bad idea to drop a question that requires transparency in the lap of an unsuspecting person.

Just a thought.

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