How I lost the privilege of leading Bible studies

Lost PrivilegeI have led Bible studies all of my life – or so it seems.

It is what I did as a camp counselor, a youth group leader, a pastor and a friend. It was once a privilege, but it is one that I no longer have.

Here is what happened:

I gave the privilege of leading Bible studies away!

Let me explain.

The last time I met with someone who wanted to read the Bible, I told them that I would be their guide. That is, I would help them by telling them what to read.

Then I said that I would lead our first discussion, and my wife would lead the second one. We would help by showing them how to lead a Bible discussion group.

And then it would be their turn: they would lead our third discussion!

The third study was wonderful. Not only did our friend do a great job of leading the discussion, but she invited another friend to join us. And yes, she has been leading the Bible discussion group ever since!

Your turn:

  1. Brainstorm five to seven benefits of asking the person who wants to read the Bible be the one who leads the Bible discussion group.
  2. What paradigm shifts and new behaviors would be necessary for you to give away your privilege of leading Bible studies by the third meeting?

Share your thoughts and make it a conversation!

read more about disciple making skill #4

8 thoughts on “How I lost the privilege of leading Bible studies

  1. I have realized this truth: “Leadership development happens best in the absence of leadership.” This is required in all leadership development processes. I have to stop leading to allow others to lead.

    The problem is that too many leaders get personal satisfaction and significance from being the leader. Additionally, they believe somehow that they are being paid to be the leader so they have to keep leading. If only we could embrace this truth and begin passing on the privilege to lead, facilitate, teach the Bible to others rather than keeping that privilege to ourselves.


      1. The book is really about the leadership/growth principles from Community Christian Church in the Chicago area. They pretty much take the common teaching principle:

        I teach, you watch
        I teach, you help
        You teach, I help
        You teach, I watch
        You teach, someone else watches…

        And show how they’ve applied it at every level of leadership. (Small groups, coaching, worship, pastoral, etc)


    1. Thanks, Justin and Beejai, for the helpful mentoring models.

      Justin – you once suggested “Model, Assist, Watch and Leave … but don’t go too far away.” Did you develop that any further?


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