Where it began for me
I remember being a young Christian woman who was just learning how to dive into the Bible and find all its treasures. I was learning so much about Jesus that I wanted to share that learning experience with others. But, I didn’t know how. At first, I tried a few small study guides and just basically read through them with a group of friends. Then, I joined an organized women’s Bible Study where the discussion leaders just had us go around the circle reading and answering the questions. I knew there had to be a better way.
Fast forward a few years. We were in a new church with a small women’s Bible Study. The group wrote their own studies so they were invested in them. I saw the enthusiasm. The leaders met together to share their own answers and what they were learning on their own from the study. They carried that enthusiasm to the small group discussion. This was full of joy, and fun!
They asked me to be a part of that ministry, and that’s where it took off for me! Many of the Bible Studies on my website came directly from that ministry, which was appropriately called JOY Bible Study. My joyful walk with Jesus was stimulated by watching other joy-filled women lead the Bible Study discussion. I learned that I could do it, too. I was able to step above my insecurities and learn how to lead a Bible Study discussion with joy and confidence. That so changed my life! Joyful Walk Ministries was born during that time.
Take advantage of all the resources we have below to help you start and lead a Bible study for others.
From my experience, I want to share with you 3 reasons why you can lead a small group Bible Study even if you’ve never done it before.
Reason #1: Do it by faith. We as Christians are to live every day by faith. Anything Jesus leads you to do, He enables you to do it by His Spirit living inside you. If you are being prompted by the Lord to lead a Bible Study lesson, just say yes — “I will do this, Lord. Please help me.” Jesus is with you every step of the way.
Reason #2: Do it without knowing all the answers. No one knows all the answers anyway! Just delete that insecurity from your mind. You don’t need a seminary degree to lead a Bible Study for others, just a teachable heart and mind. Ask Jesus to teach you what you need to know for your group. Being the leader presses you to grow and learn for yourself. Then, you share what are learning as you lead others to do the same. Win-win!
Reason #3. Do it even if you are scared: Actually, being scared is a good thing. It teaches you how to depend on Jesus Christ more. And, whatever leads you to rely on Him more than relying on yourself is a good thing for you. We are to live by faith in Him and let Him live His life through us. It is okay to say, “Lord, I can’t do this on my own, but you can in me and through me. I will trust you with this.”
- Do the questions direct you to look at the biblical text for answers?
- How many days are required to do each lesson?
- Are the questions more about God and what he is doing or more about us and how we are feeling?
- Are the author’s core beliefs in line with what the Bible teaches?
- Will the study teach you how to study the Bible for yourself?
- Get more ideas to help you choose a Bible Study here.
- Select a Bible study that interests you and would interest other women.
- Think of women to invite to join the group.
- Choose the best time and day to meet together.
- Find a place to meet.
- Set a start date and give the women directions how to get a copy of the study guide.
- Get more ideas to start a study here.
- Choose a short and easy study designed for beginners.
- Be aware of their feelings of insecurity.
- Work through the lesson together the first few times you meet.
- Look up and read each Bible verse together.
- Provide the best tutoring for them to learn.
- Get more ideas for nurturing women new to the Bible here.
As you open yourself to the Holy Spirit’s leading, do the study for yourself first. What you learn in your own personal study time will be valuable to your group as you lead them through the discussion. Ask Jesus to help you make a plan that includes the most important parts of the lesson. Always read the main Bible passage(s) for the lesson. Otherwise, you are spending your group time on man’s word rather than God’s revealed word and your response to it. Lead the women to trust in Jesus to meet their needs and don’t let the women try to fix each other’s problems.