Author Archives: Dr. Henry Cloud

Making Your Small Group Work Tip 12

Tip 12: Group Check-In #2 Just like a car needs a tune-up, your group needs a mid-course check-up. Biblical references: • 1 Corinthians 11:28—Examine yourself before coming to the communion table • 2 Corinthians 13:5—Examine yourselves to see whether you’re in the faith Review of grace, truth, and time: • Grace, truth, and time are the three foundational

Making Your Small Group Work Tip 11

Tip 11: Prayer Use creativity and different techniques when you pray as a group in order to expand people’s understanding of what prayer can be and to deepen the connection with God and each other. Biblical references: • Jeremiah 29:12—“Call upon me . . . and I will listen” • Matthew 6:9—“This, then, is how you should

Making Your Small Group Work Tip 10

Tip 10: Helping Others Take “Growth Risks” Definition: A growth risk is any action or statement, new or out of your comfort zone, that has a possibility of a negative outcome. The challenge is given in the context of the group. Biblical references: • Colossians 1:28—“. . . we present everyone perfect [complete] in Christ . . .”

Making Your Small Group Work Tip 9

Tip 9: Responding to Someone Who Is Hurting Definition: Responding to someone who is hurting means allowing them to express and process their pain in the context of the group. Emotional pain is a normal part of life, and therefore a normal part of group life. It’s okay to express hurt, grief, or other negative emotions, and the group

Making Your Small Group Work Tip 8

Tip 8: Helping and Supporting Each Other Definition: Helping and supporting each other is another level of the “being attentive” skill. It means providing practical help and support, including wisdom or counsel, and may occur in the group setting or outside of it. Biblical references: • 1 Thessalonians 5:14—Encourage the timid, help the weak • Luke 10:25–37—The Good

Making Your Small Group Work Tip 7

Tip 7: Giving and Receiving Feedback Definition: Giving feedback is noticing and expressing what you think, feel, or perceive about someone for their benefit and awareness. It may be positives or negatives. Biblical references: • Proverbs 27:5—“Better is open rebuke than hidden love” • Ecclesiastes 7:5—“It is better to heed a wise man’s rebuke than listen to the

Making Your Small Group Work Tip 6

Tip 6: Calling Out the Best in Others Definition: Calling out the best in others is part affirmation and part invitation— affirming something in someone and asking them to keep bringing it into the group. It applies to both individuals and to the group as a whole. Biblical references: • Hebrews 10:24—“. . . spur one another on

Making Your Small Group Work Tip 5

Tip 5: Asking Good Questions Definition: There are two types of questions you should ask during your group meetings. They are questions that: • Discover more information (information exchange) • Explore experience (thoughts, feelings, etc.) Biblical reference: • Proverbs 20:5—“The purposes of a man’s heart are deep waters, but a man of understanding draws them out.” Why

Making Your Small Group Work Tip 4

Tip 4: Group Check-In #1 Definition: A group “check-in” is a regularly scheduled “snapshot.” It’s a time at the end of a meeting (approximately 15 minutes) in which the group evaluates how things are going according to the original goals. Your group should do this every three to four months (about four times a year). At the end

Making Your Small Group Work Tip 3

Tip 3: Telling Your Story (Without Going On and On) Definition: Telling your “story” means telling people about those significant events and relationships that have shaped you in the past and continue to shape you today. It includes feelings or reactions to past or present experiences. A healthy group gives adequate time for everyone to share his or