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Free Small Group Stuff

Hello all. It's been a while and for that I apologize. Because I love you so much (and because I don't have any other commentary) and because we had such a great time in our small group (we call them Connecting Points) this weekend I thought I'd share what we did and let you download it for free.

[The rest is detail about our meeting... skip to the bottom if you just want the download]

This Sunday our Connecting Points started up again and the group that my wife and I facilitate met at our place. It's shaping up to be one of my favorite groups in a long time. This group was wide-open transparent from jump-street. for half of the group this is their first group in our church they've been apart of so I was very pleased with the transparency. Another thing that made it great was that we laughed like crazy but we kept moving forward... very fun and very productive at the same time.

We have a diverse mix of age and church experience (I see a ton of value in diversity and not as much in mono-bland-ity --new word---) so the group will definately be interesting as we learn from each other this semester (our group will run up until a few weeks before Christmas and then we'll start up after the new year).

So we wanted a highly interactive group with more of a facilitator feel and not as much of information transfer (like a classroom) so this week we walked through 1 Corinthians 13 looking for hints on how to improve our marriages. After reading together we divided up to process and break it down among wives in a group and husbands in another group (one in living room, one in the kitchen). We would read a verse and then ask questions like

* How can this make my marriage better?

* What is different in how I take this vs. how my spouse would act this out?

* What are some funny experiences that relate to this?

Ultimately both groups were able to talk about everyday life in context and in concert with God's word. I think it is Mark Batterson, Ed Young or Andy Stanley (I don't remember) who said "Information without application is an abomination." This week's group was definately not that. We both exegated the passage as well as exegated our marriages. That's what I call a bible study!

Anyway, after our groups finished (we had note-takers), we privately made a list of 5 things our mates could do this week to show us love. This list was later given to our spouse at the end and our spouse picked 2 they would work to accomplish this week.

So our groups get back together and talk through with the opposite sex some of the things that each group brought up. What I thought was great was that both groups brought up things that they know they could do better. It wasn't an "us vs. them" mentality. It was an honest and humorous dialogue between the sexes. Some guys said they should be home more... some said they need to be more sensitive... some said they need to clean the house... etc. Wives said they need to affirm their husbands more often, others said they could give some space and still others realized that nagging wasn't helping. It was a GREAT time.

We concluded with each couple exchanging their lists in private and praying together. One man even said "I have never prayed specifically with my wife about her until tonight. I'm glad we did this." That is awesome!

As men we challenged each other to be accountable as the spiritual leaders in the home. My prayer is that this group of men will continue to be open and honest. The most challenging guy to me was a guy who's been attending church for just under a year who seemed to have the most passion about making things better in his home. It was awesome.

So anyway, this was a simple exercise but one that you can steal and use in your context if you need a great activity with a small group of mainly married couples. I'm attaching a link here to the zip file and you can make any adjustments you want. For our night I gave everyone a sheet at the beginning outlining everything we'd be doing and it worked like a charm. I hope it helps you too!

Small Group Material LINK

posted by Tally Wilgis @ Wednesday, August 30, 2006

2 Comments:

At 7:30 PM, Blogger Tadd Grandstaff said...

Tally I downloaded the files bro...good stuff man!

 
At 8:21 PM, Anonymous Lyle said...

T,
if you were talking about me in that one part about the guy attending church for just under a year being passionate about making his marriage better (figured it was me since the other 2 dudes are new)... uh, we've been coming for just over 2 years now... since the roller rink. :) time flys huh.

 

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