Monday, January 19, 2015

Back in the Saddle

Happy Monday!  Lately on Mondays, we've been sharing ways to make a difference in our lives as Christian women.  Today will be just a little different.  This time we would like to share with you, but we would also like your feedback.

A year or so back, I decided to start a Ladies' Bible study with my congregation.  It was every other week, and it started off great!  Thirty ladies met the first week, and the discussion was good. We were using a 13 week study book, and everyone seemed excited. It didn't take long, though, for the bloom to fade.  By the end of the study, I was lucky to have four other ladies. One week, no one showed up.  I was discouraged. 

People told me it wasn't my fault, that this always happens with any regular activity outside of worship service, that I shouldn't take it personally.
I did anyway. 

Shortly after, I read a book called Woman to Woman (and reviewed it on the blog), and I realized that the lackluster participation was, in part, my fault.  You see, I didn't want to come across as pushy, so I simply did my lessons and tried to be no more than a discussion facilitator. Assuming that everyone else would be as excited as I was about the study, I didn't try to engage interest in any way other than  to announce the times we were meeting.  I didn't consider doing anything outside of the study to encourage the ladies either.  

In short, an outside observer might think I didn't care about it too much. 
The fact is, my heart cared, but my actions were not enough to show it. 

Well, now that I've taken a year to beat myself up about it (not really), I'm ready to jump back in the saddle.  I've been so excited about the 12 methods of Bible study that I've been sharing with you blog readers (there'll be a new one Wednesday!), that I really wanted to share it with my church ladies too.  But this time I want to be more intentional.  I want my actions to show how much I care. 

Our first meeting is February 5, and I've been preparing already.  I'd like to share with you some of the things I've done or am planning to do, and I'd like your feedback on other ideas you may have.
  • I made a sign.  Well, actually, my friend Katti did most of the work. She is both more creative and more meticulous than I am, and she knows how to use the Cricut.  So, thanks Katti for my sign!  
  • I'm encouraging the ladies to invite a friend.
  • I've been praying for the Bible study on a daily basis and will continue to pray for each lady who comes. (Yay for the ECHO prayer app!)
  • I'll be buying notebooks for each lady for the handouts I'll be passing out.  I spent way too much time looking for the perfect paper to be a binder cover. 
  • This class will only be once a month.  I'm hoping people will be better able to commit to a monthly meeting than a bi-monthly one.
  • I'll encourage everyone to choose one book of the Bible to study all year long, using each of these methods in turn.  
  • Each month, I'll pass out the notes for the method of Bible study, along with examples that I've done.
  • I'll need to be one month ahead in my own studies so that I can not only have these examples, but also be ready to answer any questions the ladies might have.
  • I'll have the projector set up in the fellowship hall so that I can share the online resources that I've found helpful.
  • I'm considering having a powerpoint presentation each month.  I'm not sure of my skills in this area, so I'm on the fence about whether to do it or not.
  • The first month, I'll bring a light snack.  Afterwards, I may ask for other ladies in the class to help me with that part. 
  • I'll get everyone's cell number (if they have one) and send both text reminders for the next class and text encouragements to keep studying.
  • I'd like to get everyone's birthday and send them a card. 
This seems like a lot, but I know that you, our wonderful readers, have a wealth of experience in attending and leading Bible studies for ladies.  I'd love to hear your suggestions for how to make it successful!  Please leave us a comment below! 


No comments:

Post a Comment