GIG Leader's Tips

Here are a few pointers about GIGs that leaders have found to be crucial--tricks of the trade, you might say.

1. Facilitate and Participate

Many of our GIGs in InterVarsity are one on one. There is an art to leading a one-on-one GIG: You'll want to ask the discussion questions, and then (at the same time) be a participant along with the other person.

To do this well, it helps to have a written guide. You can ask a question the guide raises, and then both of you can respond. That way you are not seen as an expert, but rather as a learner along with the other person.

Share your own struggles, questions, and fears, and not just answers. Your example will stimulate the same humility and open-heartedness in your fellow GIG member.

2. Ask Unintimidating Questions

GIG discussion questions for seekers and skeptics are often phrased differently from small-group discussion questions for believers.

Small-group Bible studies for believers include a fair amount of observation questions: what was going on, who was doing what, where was it happening, why is that important, and so on.

Seekers and skeptics who are studying the Scriptures for the first time feel very intimidated and don't want to betray their ignorance or feel foolish. So GIG questions should be about what they think, not about what they notice. You as the leader can make an observation, and then ask for their response to what you have led them to see in the passage.

3. Wait to Pray

Prayer is best left for later GIGs meetings, perhaps the fourth or fifth time you've met. In the first couple of sessions, you'll want to maximize the comfort level for the first-time seeker or skeptic. When you do pray in later meetings, pray briefly and in ways your GIG members would feel comfortable imitating.