Top 5 Things to do When Beginning a Study
As I was beginning a neighborhood Bible study I decided to hand-deliver a few invitations. Nancy lived across from me at the time, and my simple invitation turned into a conversation with her. Nancy shared with me that she had always wanted to attend a Bible study, but she didn’t know anything about the Bible. This had always held her back. I assured her that we would all be learning together and that she could feel comfortable. She came, and her life began to change. Christ made a difference in Nancy’s life through a neighborhood Bible study!
Beginning a NBS might feel like a daunting task. Will anyone come? Will I be seen as the Bible person on the street? Will people stop being my friend? We all have concerns and fears as we begin. We thought we would compile our top 5 things we have found most helpful.
1. Pray. Do not underestimate prayer. Ask the Lord to help you as you begin. If possible, ask someone to pray with you. Pray for open hearts. Pray for divine connections. Pray for people to come!
2. Choose the time, date, and place to begin. Choose, also, the materials you will use. We like to encourage beginning with the LIGHT study. This might go without saying, but being clear with the details is vital. Be a student of your neighbors. Do most of them work? Would a nighttime study be better than daytime? Do people travel? Better to avoid certain days? Etc.
3. Hand out invitations to every home. Did we say every? Yes, every. Don’t try to guess who might be interested and who won’t be. Nancy, in the above story, was someone I would have not predicted to be interested and yet she was. Be sure to say on the invitation that all are welcome. Here is a sample:
Come discover how the truths of the Bible can make a difference in your life – and enjoy developing a group of caring, supportive friends. A neighborhood Bible study is forming and we want to invite you. The study is non-denominational, and we will use a discussion guide. The study is designed for all levels of Bible knowledge. The only requirement to come is that you believe the Bible is worth studying.
Other sample invitations can be found here.
4. Prepare. Organize the Bible study time. Write out approximate timing for welcome, refreshments (if appropriate), ice-breaker, Bible study, and closing prayer. We encourage two hours of preparation for every one hour of study. Be well familiarized with the passage and questions. For more specifics on this, click here.
5. Sit back and watch God work. Hebrews 11:6 says, “Without faith it is impossible to please God.” As you take this step of faith to reach out right where you live, it will be exciting to see what the Lord has in store!
We want to come alongside you as you begin! Do not hesitate to reach out to us for prayer, encouragement, or advice. We are here for you.