Off to a Rocky Start – Now What?

My triad and I will resume our Q Place gatherings around January 18th. We have had fun with Q Place and with the friends who have joined us. However, after our introductory meeting, only two or three (often different) people attended any one night. So most of these interesting people have yet to meet one another.

Our conversations were always interesting, and everyone always seemed stimulated and enthused. Definitely, there was a positive, warm and fun atmosphere.

We used the first four sessions of the Bible Conversation Card called Fulfillment & Purpose. Because the Jewish Holiday and several Cubs' games were on Wednesday nights, a few of our sessions got canceled. So we never got to Week 5 about Jesus and Week 6 about eternal life. Therefore our friends never heard the Good News, but then again, we were still very early in the relationship-building process—to put it mildly. We weren't sure what to think about this.  Was this good, OK, or not so good? And, what do you think our next step should be?

– Ricki R. from Illinois

Ricki, it’s definitely good that you got started and that those who showed up demonstrated a positive response! As you were getting this group off the ground, people had fun together and felt safe, accepted, and secure about discussing spiritual matters. That is huge! Way to go!

A fragmented start to a Q Place is a common experience. Holidays can get in the way. Also, meeting regularly to discuss spiritual things is a new rhythm for people outside the church. As you say, you are building a group relationship and introducing a new priority into the lives of people who are not used to doing this.

Don’t quit now! You’ve done a lot of good groundwork to get to this point, and this is a great time for a restart! Check out the Q Place resource Starting up…again!continue praying a lot, and consider this format that may work when you get back together to relaunch your group:

1. Ramp up
“Tell us a high and a low of Christmas and New Year’s for you.”

2. Evaluate
“What do you like about our group so far?” and “What would you change?”

3. Regroup
“In this group we set out to discuss important questions about life, God, and the Bible. Let’s review the Guidelines we also agreed on so we’re all on the same page.” (Read the Guidelines from the back of a Bible Conversation Card, or download and print the PDF of the Guidelines here.)

4. Assess
“Where would you like to see this group in six months?”
“What is your commitment to this group—do you want to continue?’
“Do you like the schedule we’ve set?

5. Suggest
Provide a few options for what the group might discuss going forward. Here are some to consider:

  • Continue what you were discussing in the fall.
  • Watch and discuss some Explore God videos. (Check out these Explore God videos with discussion questions on the Q Place website, or go to exploreGod.com for many more options.)

6. Wrap Up
Make sure everyone knows the date/time of the next meeting and encourage them to put it on their calendar.

Don’t forget to check out the Q Place resource Starting up…again! Re-starting your group in January can be just the thing to bring together the loose ends and continue strong!