I have received a number of requests from people wanting further help in using our conference material and now our book, The PLEDGE of a Lifetime, for their small group study.
Hence this post today–a beginning point for those who dare! I say that partially in jest, and partially not, knowing that talking about real life with others can be a bit uncomfortable. At the same time it affords some of the greatest opportunities for learning. Studying the concepts of PLEDGE in a group can be encouraging to all, as we discover the similarity of our challenges. It also provides an environment where we can learn different perspectives as we share and listen to each other.
Here is the plan:
(CLICK HERE to download this study guide as a FREE pdf.)
Week 1: Everyone watches the PLEDGE DVD together.
The DVD is just under an hour in length. (You can purchase the DVD and book HERE.)
Encourage everyone to spell out the word PLEDGE vertically on the left hand side of an 8 X 11 sheet of paper from top to bottom. Then as the DVD is played, each one takes notes on each of the different steps of PLEDGE. Have them write out answers to questions like the following: What caught their attention? What did they learn? What did they realize they need to be practicing?
For discussion time, each one takes a turn to share something they noted – whatever they are comfortable sharing.
Week 2: Everyone reads in advance the Foreword, Preface, Introduction and chapter 1.
Week 3: Everyone reads in advance chapters 2 and 3.
Week 4: Everyone reads in advance chapter 4 & 5
Week 5: Everyone reads in advance chapters 6 & 7
Week 6: Everyone reads in advance chapter 8 & 9
Week 7: Everyone reads in advance chapter 10 & 11
For each group meeting:
Use the following discussion questions:
1. What did you take away from the readings that week?
2. What questions did you have from the reading or practicing during the week?
3. How did you experience this impacting the relationship with your spouse or your interactions with your children that week? How about your conversations with others that week such as friends, extended family, co-workers, neighbors, etc.?
If there is time at the end of a group meeting, everyone can practice the PLEDGE steps reviewed that night with their spouse or a friend by using one of the discussion questions on pp. 143-145 in the book.
In closing each week:
Explain the first week about the four stages of learning:
1. We are exposed to something new and are intrigued.
2. We begin wondering about how to apply what we observed and wonder if it would work for us.
3. We begin working with the concepts and applying them to our lives.
4. But the learning is not complete until the new ideas become a regular part of who we are.
Talk about how we want to actually LEARN the PLEDGE steps and process, and it won’t happen without intentionality. Practicing each week is necessary for learning!
Encourage each one to practice the steps reviewed that night during the following week in every day conversation. In other words, don’t wait until there is a conflict to practice, do so whenever they dialogue. So for example, when practicing the step of Pause, ask everyone to practice “pausing” before they speak or respond to another. In that way, they are training themselves to be more deliberate in their communication and becoming more intentional about speaking love.
Assign everyone the chapters for the next week, reminding them of the discussion questions used during the group time.
**Keep in mind the Questions and Answers Regarding the Use of PLEDGE on pp. 135-141.
Question: Are you interested in doing this study with your small group? Let us know below! You can leave a comment by clicking here.
CLICK HERE to download this study guide as a FREE pdf.
The PLEDGE of a Lifetime and the PLEDGE DVD can be purchased HERE.