The first time I led a Bible study did the enemy ever have a heyday! Honest! After each meeting the accuser would rip me up one side and down the other, reminding me of every word misspoken, every uncomfortable silence, pointing out what I could’ve done better, making me feel like the biggest loser ever!
Thankfully, one of the girls I was meeting with one on one was in the study and I asked her for feedback – and was she ever faithful! After I got home she’d call and talk through the study with me. When I shared how I thought I’d blown it she’d be like, “Oh no, I think it was good you said that. Didn’t you notice how that helped to draw the girls into the discussion?”
She helped bring perspective. And even when I really had blown it she encouraged me to learn from it and keep pressing on.
And this was one of the freshmen I was meeting with!!! Gracious feedback from anyone can be a huge help!
A key time when the enemy loves to attack is right when someone first starts leading a Bible study. I cannot stress enough how vital it is that there be someone giving feedback, helping to bring perspective and process what transpired.
Otherwise it’s so easy to conclude – “See, I can’t do this!” and stop and never attempt again! Which is exactly what the enemy wants!!! It is so much easier to stop someone at the beginning, when it’s all new and she is struggling with insecurities anyway.
This is such a vital time when support is needed as well as feedback!
Learning to lead a Bible study is a key part of helping someone grow spiritually – you always learn something better when you’re helping others learn! In addition, this is a key way we can help advance God’s kingdom – there is such a need for women who are willing to take initiative and get Bible studies started!
Honest! It is amazing to me how few women in the church ever think of leading a Bible study. So many women who’ve done Bible study for years and have so much to offer just don’t step up to the plate. Sometimes it’s because they believe the lie they don’t have what it takes to do this so they’ve never even tried. Other times it’s because the enemy gained a victory when they were younger and first tried…
If you are starting to lead a Bible study for the first time or if you are meeting with someone who is starting to do this, please be sure to make provision for feedback. I cannot stress how vitally important this is!
Never forget, there is a battle raging and the enemy is a devious and deadly accuser. Warning people in advance, giving them a heads up that he’s most likely to attack here can really help fortify their souls in advance!
You see, the enemy loves to take a little bit of truth and twist it to suit his purposes!
The truth is no one starts out as an amazing Bible study leader. There is a lot you can learn and it’s something even after thirty years of leading Bible studies I’m still growing in!!! If I’d waited until I could do this well to start I’d never have begun!
And in truth the best Bible studies I’ve ever been in have been facilitated, not taught. You don’t have to be Beth Moore or Kay Arthur to lead a life changing Bible study!
Give me a Bible study leader who gives time for people to share what they are learning from the Word and asks questions to help them further process and provides an environment where people are actively seeking to apply God’s Word to their lives – that’s infinitely better than listening to the best Bible teacher and never doing anything with it!
And yes, you’re going to make mistakes. But thankfully God doesn’t only use those who get it perfect. As G.K. Chesterton says, “If a thing is worth doing, it’s worth doing badly.” Please note, this is not a justification to keep doing something poorly,** remember, a disciple is a learner – so if you have a heart of a learner you are going to want to keep growing in your ability to do this and the more experience you get, the more opportunity you have to grow.
But here’s the kicker… to grow, to improve, you need feedback! Experience alone doesn’t automatically grow you – but evaluated experience sure can! Do you see how critical getting feedback is?
But until you get this, as you are starting out, remember what the Lord says in 2 Corinthians 12:9, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” And Paul writes in response, “Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”
So here’s the irony – Satan is determined to pull out the stops to get people to never start or quickly stop leading Bible studies by attacking and making you think you can’t do this because you don’t have what it takes, but the truth is your weakness creates opportunity for God’s power to rest on you!
And with the power of God resting on you ~ is that ever an awesome way to lead a Bible study!!!
** For further thoughts on what Chesterton meant by this quote check this out: http://www.chesterton.org/discover-chesterton/frequently-asked-questions/a-thing-worth-doing/ (and I must say I absolutely LOVE the definition given of an amateur! This so applies to raising spiritual babies too!!!)