Facilitating a small group is more art than science. While there are certain principles small group facilitators need to follow,[ref]Some of these principles are doing the Unifying Question each week, having an apprentice/assistant/co-leader, having an Empty Chair in the group to remind everyone to pray for unsaved people, serving together at church or in the community, talking less than 25 percent of the time, starting and ending the group on time, calling someone who is part of your group and did not show up for group and did not tell anyone he wouldn’t be there, and encouraging everyone to participate in the discussion.[/ref] there are various techniques you can use.
VISIT OTHER GROUPS TO SEE HOW OTHER FACILITATORS FACILITATE
Each facilitator is going to have his own unique style of facilitating a small group. Thus, there are things each facilitator can learn from each other. Which is a principle that Scripture also teaches.
Scripture on Learning and Growing from Others
- Intelligent people are always ready to learn. Their ears are open for knowledge. (Prov 18:15, NLT)
- And you should imitate me, just as I imitate Christ. (1 Cor 11:1)
- Dear brothers and sisters, pattern your lives after mine, and learn from those who follow our example. (Phil 3:17)
- Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me—everything you heard from me and saw me doing. Then the God of peace will be with you. (Phil 4:9)
- You have heard me teach things that have been confirmed by many reliable witnesses. Now teach these truths to other trustworthy people who will be able to pass them on to others. (2 Tim 2:2)
Visit to Learn Some New Facilitator Ideas
If you want to visit another small group to get some new ideas about how to be a better facilitator, contact your church and ask for suggestions on which group to visit.
Our church normally provides a list of “Small Group Connections” which is the contact list of other small group facilitators that people can reach out to when they want to talk and have questions. An idea is to take that small group facilitator to lunch or coffee and talk to him about his experience leading a group.
Write down a few questions you want to ask him, bring a pad of paper with you to the meeting, and write down answers as you learn and grow. One of the reasons that I work hard to get all of our LIFEGroup facilitators together for a training twice a year and for our annual BBQ is so that the leaders can connect with each other, talk, and encourage each other as you grow as facilitators.
Different facilitators have different styles and methods of facilitating their groups. Visit a couple other groups to see what you can learn from others and how you can improve the way you facilitate your group.