Last week we took a look at how we study the Bible in Sunday School. This week I want to share some thoughts with you about how we apply the Bible to everyday living through Sunday School. The following ideas are from a great article on one of Lifeway’s Bible Studies for Life resource pages.
Here are four practices that can help you learn how to apply scripture as a group:
Regularly include questions in your time together that pull toward application. Whether you’re studying the Bible together or simply sharing a meal, steering conversation toward application moves the experience from information to transformation. As important as it is to understand what the Bible means, if we don’t get to doing what it says we miss the point.
Provide opportunities in group meetings to model or role play application. Different learning styles (verbal, visual, physical, etc.) make it essential to build in different ways of teaching the principle.
Add offline check-ins as an essential ingredient. Groups that only interact during their meeting time rarely experience the depth of connection that produces life-change. A quick phone call, a Facebook message or text, meeting for coffee or even sitting together in the worship service takes relationship to a new level. Building in the practice of asking, “Have you been able to put what we learned into practice?” goes a long way toward becoming doers.
Add a “how’d your week go?” component to every meeting. Spending a few minutes talking about how members applied what was learned last week brings scripture to life. Without application, learning never moves from information to transformation.
Each of these four points is well said. I would, however, add a comment to #3. Many of our small groups have Facebook groups, and I think that this a great development. It provides a great format for the teacher to interact and follow up during the week with a point of application, or a check in. Be sure that you create a “group” and not a “page”. The difference is that when people in your small group join the Facebook group, they get a notification when someone posts. That won’t happen with a “page”. Not all classes will, or should, choose to have a Facebook group. But I recommend that you do take advantage of some way to maintain conversation in the group outside of the classroom.
Always feel free to contact me with thoughts and ideas about these articles, or anything I can serve you with. Thanks for all you do, and I look forward to seeing you Sunday!