Are you interested in helping people connect with God’s Word? Do you struggle to read Scripture daily yourself? Does your church value getting people to read the Bible? You should try a Facebook Bible Study.
For the past 6 months I have been asking my Facebook friends to join me in reading the Bible. I did this for three reasons:
- To get into the Bible myself.
- To help others consistently read Scripture.
- To pursue a growing relationship with Christ in the context online community.
Honestly, I struggle to read regularly, so I was trying to get a little accountability. As it turns out, other people struggle with this too. In addition to reading my Bible more, I have also seen people encouraged to share their thoughts and questions on Scripture. A few times I saw hurting people helped by others who may have not felt like they could help anyone. As a result, I have decided to continue and more people continue to join us.
You may be interested in more details as to how I do this. Here you go.
1) Promotion – I start with spending 4-7 days promoting the group on my personal Facebook timeline. Usually I do a post in the morning and one late at night. If you are just trying this out, it is easy to do this manually. If you decided to do this regularly, I would suggest scheduling your posts using Hootsuite (what I use) or Buffer. Here are a few examples that I have used.
- “Been awhile since you were reading the Bible regularly? That’s okay. Join me, starting this next week. Like this post to join.”
- “Monday I start a 3 week series through the Bible. Want to read along with me? Just 15 mins a day.”
- “Never read the Bible? You have got to read the story of Joseph in Genesis 37-50! I’m going to be reading it the next 3 weeks, just a few minutes a day. Let me know if you want to join me.”
- “Read the Bible 15 mins a day and join me in discussing the text via a Facebook Group. Like this post to join. We start Monday.”
- “Gal, Eph, Phil, Col. Reading these over the next 4 weeks. Like this post to read and discuss with me. We start tomorrow.”
2) Length – As you may have noticed, I make the reading a 2-4 week series. Then I follow that with a two week break before starting again. Right now I am doing a four week series through Luke. At the end of this I will take a one week break, followed by a week of promotion for the next group, and then start again. Doing a series gives people (and me) something to look forward to starting…and ending. It also gives everyone a natural way to step out.
3) Multiple Groups and Introductions – Originally I just had one group, but several people did not participate in the discussion. Then I tried breaking everyone into groups of 8-10 and do a starter question before reading begins just like you might do in a small group Bible study. This time around I am doing two groups of 20ish.
4) 15 Minutes of Reading – In an ideal world I try to read 4-5 chapters of Scripture a day. This takes about 20 minutes and I got the idea from CMA’s Life Transformation Groups. Sometimes this is not a reality, however, so I try to at least read the chapter we are discussing for the day. Also, I thought 20 minutes sounded long, so I just ask everyone to do 15 minutes. Most group members probably read one chapter a day. I’m okay with this.
5) Grace and Consistency – In my opinion consistency is more important than quantity. So if someone does not have time to read as much as others, but they read something, I call that a win. Sometimes that person is me. Also, if someone gets behind, I do not ask them to catch up. That can be overwhelming and the goal is to create a habit of Scripture reading, not get through a course. God seems to be big on grace. Must be something to it.
6) Daily Discussion – Each day I post a question (the same question) to each group. Usually a couple people respond to these questions but there are some days that no one responds. My goal is to get to the point where others are sharing their comments and questions before I post mine. Then I will just participate in the conversation just like them. Typically, though, my questions/comments are simple and quick. I only do one, sometimes two a day, and typically do one per chapter. I have also tried asking people, in advance, to post a question/comment on a certain day over a specific chapter.
Hopefully this has been helpful to you. Whether you are wanting to serve others or just need some personal accountability, you should give Facebook Bible Studies a try. Let me know how it goes.
Any questions? Please ask in the comments section.