Have you ever experienced a moment where you felt underprepared? Someone unexpectedly turns up at your house, and as you welcome them, your mind goes to the pile of dishes stacked up in the kitchen. Or you're at work, and out of nowhere, someone asks you to talk about what you're working on right now. But at the moment, for some reason, you can't describe or even think of a single thing you've done that day!
We've all been there. Lack of preparation can be highly uncomfortable – for ourselves and others! So when it comes to leading a WordGo Group Bible study, how might you prepare and prepare well? First of all, be encouraged: It is possible! Taking a few small, proactive steps as a Group Guide can make a difference for everyone.
So grab a notebook, a pen, and your daily planner. Circle or highlight the six days leading up to your first WordGo gathering. Then, consider how to prepare over six days in six ways:
Reading the Bible passage each week is your first step to preparing well. You'll find Scripture provided daily in the app (in the NIV translation). Read the week's passage from start to finish; then, notice how it's divided across each study day, and re-read each section.
As you read, mark down:
- the main people, places, events, and repeated words.
- any parts of the passage you find challenging or encouraging.
- any verses people may have questions about.
Remember this: You're not expected to have all the answers. But it is good to validate any questions your Group Members might raise. Always encourage people to look at the study notes, question insights, and weekly audio teaching for deeper explanations.
Take this to heart: When we frequently spend time in God's Word, our minds are renewed, and our hearts are encouraged. Our hope for you as a Group Guide is that you will personally experience God's growth and transformation as you prepare to gather for Bible study.
After reading the passage, consider the study questions. Notice there are questions for each day of study in the app. As a Group Guide, be aware that the number of questions you and your group members individually receive depends on the measure of study time you selected in personal "Study Preferences."
What setting did you and your group members choose?
- 5-12 minute setting = 1st question of the day
- 10-20 minute setting = 1st and 2nd questions of the day
- 15-30 minute setting = 1st, 2nd, and 3rd questions of the day
Notice the different kinds of questions: Factual questions about the text, truth questions about the character of God, and application questions to respond to what you've learned.
Be encouraged: Every WordGo question is designed to help deepen your understanding of the text. Any study question you consider can propel group discussion forward.
Your group gathering is an opportunity for everyone to share what they've learned through their personal study. On the third day leading up to your gathering, plan how you might jumpstart the conversation and focus the discussion on the text. Try selecting study questions you think will best stimulate and then build the conversation. Remember: You have options!
- You can choose an opening question from Prepare or Reflect.
- You can select one question from each study day in the app.
- Or you could use these simple questions as a framework: What's the passage about? What do you learn from it? How will you apply it?
As the weeks go by, you'll begin to discover the style of discussion that fits your group best. If you're looking for more ways to turn questions into group discussion, check out this blog.
Once you have read the Scripture passage, considered the study questions, and planned for conversation, take the final three days to pray. Begin by praying for your group! Think about the people coming and consider how you can best pray for them.
Pray... that the gathering will be a restful place to be refreshed, that people will come to connect with friends and grow together in God’s Word, and that God will bless this new start for each of you!
Take another preparation day to pray – this time for group discussion. Meditate on the truth that the Word of God is active, living, and changes lives. Hebrews 4:12 says, “For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” (NIV)
Pray... that as you discuss the Scriptures, your Group Members will be challenged, encouraged, and ultimately, transformed.
On the day before your gathering (and perhaps every day before you meet with your group), reflect and give thanks for what God is doing in and through your life. Meditate on this truth from Philippians 4:19: “And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.” (NIV)
Pray... offering any emotional, physical, or spiritual needs to your heavenly Father, and choose to depend on Him.
Dear Group Guide, we at WordGo are so excited you’re devoted to helping others develop a regular rhythm of Bible study. Be encouraged: Your prayerful, proactive steps of preparation today make all the difference for your Group Members.
Remember, to prepare to guide over six days in six ways:
...read the passage
...consider the study questions
...plan conversation starters
...pray for the people
…pray for group discussion
…and pray for yourself!
Looking for more? Our in-app “How to be a Guide” audio training and WordGo journal articles walk Group Guides through the essentials for impactful group Bible study. Discover how to: get your group off to a great start; create the atmosphere for discussion; prepare for discussion times, manage group dynamics; and support connected conversation.