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We are afraid of silence. Especially as small group leaders. If there is silence in the room, then that means no one is talking. And if no one is talking, then we are surely failing as facilitators. But I believe we are missing out on an effective tool if we completely eliminate silence from a group meeting. There is something powerful about creating intentional space in a group meeting. In fact, there are examples throughout the Bible where silence and solitude are commended.
So how do we plan for and best utilize the power of silence in our groups? Here are three ways to take advantage of silence in your small group.
Silence - Group - Members
1. Use silence to encourage group members to speak.
It seems like an oxymoron to use silence as a tool for participation, but it works. An effective facilitator should only be talking 30 percent of the time. Remember that you have read the questions ahead of time. It will take everyone else a few moments to process the material before they are ready to answer. It’s uncomfortable to let a question sit there for a few beats, but if you can let...
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