Have you ever considered leading an online Bible study?
Perhaps you feel a passion to minister to women, or maybe you’ve lead a women’s Bible study in the past, but now you find you just don’t have another evening left in your week to be out of the home.
In 2012 my youngest was just an infant, my oldest was barely 2 years old, and I felt like a total failure. I came to Croatia to minister to people, but now I barely left my house.
Between babies and diapers, dishes and laundry….not to mention the endless sleepless nights, not only did I not have the time to meet with women, I was frankly too tired.
And yet, I felt the weight of my responsibility.
One afternoon I paced the floor, desperately trying to get my baby to sleep and praying, “God! What am I doing here anyway? I am a failure. I don’t talk to anyone. I’m not ministering to anyone!”
And that is when God brought to my mind an online Bible study that I followed called Good Morning Girls.
I could become a leader and begin reaching women through the most practical means possible – through the Internet.
After all, I could reach more women online than I ever could in person!
A handful of women in my church agreed that they would like to join an online Bible study group on Facebook, and the Croatian chapter of Good Morning Girls was birthed.
Only a year later it would explode and cover all of Croatia, Bosnia, and Serbia and 5 years later we have 10 simultaneous study groups and a team of leaders and translators.
When Good Morning Girls takes breaks, together we arrange our own studies for these ladies who are so hungry and eager to learn more about Jesus!
Leading an online Bible study is so practical in today’s society.
It seems that as women we are constantly running – whether it’s work meetings, business trips, school functions, sports games…we are always on the go.
By leading an online Bible study, each women involved can study and check in at a time that best fits their needs. The accountability is still there. The ability to study together is still there.
The best part is, you don’t have to do your hair and makeup, and you can attend in your PJs!
Seriously – this is the best thing ever!
Here are 10 ways you can lead an online Bible study
1. Facebook Groups
One of the most practical ways to lead an online Bible study is through a Facebook group. You can set your group to public, if you don’t mind everyone seeing what is posted, or you can set it to closed or secret.
In a closed group, people can search for your group by keywords and see who the members of the group are. Facebook groups set to secret are not searchable and cannot be found on Facebook at all. They are truly secret. The only way members can be added is by the administrator or a member of the group. Secret groups are especially good if you are wanting to cultivate a intimate group where women feel the freedom to share openly.
In recent months, messenger has become a strong tool.
You can create group chats in Messenger, set special colors, icons and even name your chat. While new members are unable to see old messages, and the chat feature is much like Tetris – where old messages get pushed down, you can search for keywords in the chat if you want to see an old message that was posted months ago.
Messenger would be an especially useful tool for accountability for those who are just looking for a way to check in that they had their quiet time that day, and what God spoke to them individually.
You can also make group calls in Messenger.
I love Voxer! If you’re not familiar with Voxer, it is a Push To Talk (PTT) app for both IOS and Android devices. It turns your device into a walkie talkie.
You can create group “voxes” and with just a push of a button, you can leave a message. If your contact(s) are not online when your message is sent, it will stay in the group and they can listen to it when they get online.
You can chat this way real-time or over a span of time.
It is an excellent tool for those on the go, as you can chat while you walk or drive, wherever you are! And many find it it easier to leave a voice message than to type.
You can also leave text messages, and even video messages (which I’ve personally never tried).
Zello is another PTT app like Voxer and operates in much of the same way.
Whatsapp is a texting-call app for both IOS and Android devices. You can create groups and text back and forth, call – as you would through your cellular service – and all of this on WiFi so that you don’t use up your minutes or data plan.
This is especially useful for those with smaller cellular plans.
You can also leave voice messages on Whatsapp, and what I like better about it than Voxer is that you can actually cancel the voice message you send, whereas with Voxer you have to upgrade to a paid plan to recall your voxes.
Viber is a texting-call app much like Whatsapp.
Wechat is also similar to Whatsapp and Viber. Both Wechat and Viber also have desktop options, for those who do not wish to use their cell phones to send and receive calls and messages.
Skype is the grandaddy of online messaging services. In Skype you can send and receive messages and calls, you can also send short video messages that can be viewed later.
In Skype you can create groups and make group calls as well.
For those who are not so tech-savvy, email is always an option.
To do a group study, just reply to your email with the “Reply to all”, and each person in the group email will receive your reply.
10. Text message
Most smart phones have a group-text option that will send your text to everyone in the group. This is also a very easy way to do a group study, for those who are on the go.
Be looking for a future post on how to lead an online Bible study!