Are you currently asking, “What should my group study next?” There’s no one-size-fits-all answer to that question.
Here are three practical tips for picking a study:
Limit a study to 6 parts or fewer.
When studies goes on longer than that, they tend to drag. The goal is never to finish or do every part of a study. It’s to dig into the areas that challenge you and your group members to grow. Don’t feel pressure to answer every question at each group meeting. Pick the ones that resonate with you or that will challenge you and your group members to apply what you’re learning. Limiting a study to 6 parts doesn’t mean you have to choose studies that are 6 parts or fewer. So if a study has more than 6 chapters, figure out a way to limit it to 6 weeks. Either read 2 chapters each week or pick the 6 chapters that are most helpful in terms of personal application. As the group’s leader, you’ll need to work through the materials ahead of time so you can figure out which parts of the study will most benefit your group.
Don’t stick with a weak study.
You can decide to quit a study you’ve started if it’s just not generating good conversation or leading you toward practical application. Don’t stick with a study just because you feel like that’s what you’re supposed to do. If there’s broad agreement in your group that a particular study isn’t working out, move on to something else.
Select studies that help your group grow in the core values.
People who are growing spiritually are growing in their relationship with God and relationship with others. It’s always a great idea to look for studies that will strengthen your group in these areas. Maybe you want to work through a curriculum that will enhance your relationship with God, or read a book that builds community with other believers, or watch a DVD that challenges you to reach out to those outside the faith. In the course of a year, you should be able to hit on these values.