How to Facilitate a Healthy Christ-Centered Support Group
There are a number of suggestions in how to maintain a healthy Christ-centered support group. One of the first should be to pray for God’s presence, the grace of Jesus Christ and the leading of the Holy Spirit. A little common sense won’t hurt much either. Here are some other suggestions:
- Honestly share our experience, strength and hope.
- All members should be participants by sharing and listening. Those who refuse to share in meetings might not be sufficiently motivated toward recovery.
- Use I messages instead of You messages whenever possible
- Talk only about those who present (mainly ourselves). We can only be helpful to those who are present when the group meets
- Let other people speak for themselves. It is not necessary to defend other members of the group.
- Don’t counsel or give advice. Recovering people don’t like being told what to do. We listen to others share and apply to our lives what we can identify will work for us.
- Don’t preach. This is a fellowship not a dictatorship. Few things are more irritating than one all knowing person telling everybody what to do. In this setting, if we preach we elevate ourselves above others, which goes against the importance of a fellowship setting.
- Don’t monopolize – time spent in the group is precious. Be considerate and realize that none of us has all the answers.
- Attend meetings with a good attitude – with a sense of expectancy that God will speak through someone to help that specific thing we are concerned about. The Lord will often speak to us through the least likely person.
- Maintain confidentiality – what ever is said in the group – stays in the group –“Who you see here and what is said here – stays here. Here, here.”
- It is ok to freely talk about Scripture that is meaningful to us. We should certainly share what Jesus has been doing in our lives in a Christ-centered meeting.