The Lost Art of Querying

“When people think you’re dying, they really, really listen to you, instead of just…instead of just waiting for their turn to speak?”

When I first heard that quote in the movie Fight Club, I was so embarrassed. I realised how true it was for me – and it scared me even more to think that everyone else was the same! It seems like we sort of become so self obsessed and individualistic sometimes that we loose the ability to know how to care beyond saying “that’s sucks bro” – and then awkwardly cough.

But not today! Because we’re going to practise the long, lost art of querying…

We’re going to spend 5 minutes where the other person talks and you just query – and listen – I mean really listen. And then you’ll query some more. You’re not allowed to bring the conversation back to you – or give them your opinion on the subject – but you get to know the person and let them be known to you. You’re asking questions to go deeper into who they are.

This will be incredibly hard for some of us. No doubt some of us will find it easy to talk about ourselves, but hard to ask questions and care. But today you’re going to try and scratch beyond superficial conversation…

Others of us will hate talking about ourselves and find it scary to reveal bits of ourselves to a person we might barely know. But drop your guard! It’s something we need to do more often…

Would you believe that some people are even gifted at this whole querying thing? When they spend time with someone things just flow our of them from the queries they ask. But that takes practise, just like any art form. So today we’re learning the ancient art of querying, and starting our journey towards becoming query masters.

Pick and random question from the list below, ask your partner the question, and then continue querying from that point for a full, literal 5 minutes. You ask questions and listen, they talk. It’s fine for your talk to wander– these questions are just starting points in your queries. After that five minutes get your partner to pick a new question and swap roles. You can do this as many times as you’d like to – or with as many different people as you like.

After you’ve queried each other, stop and share with the group or each other by answering this question.

“What is God up to in the midst of your partners life?”


What specific question would you most like to ask God?
What thing most worries you in life right now?
What aspect of your mum do you see in yourself?
What aspect of your dad do you see in yourself?
What’s something new you’ve discovered about God lately?
What was your childhood like?
What specific occasion as a kid do you remember being most happy?
What’s something you’ve recently become interested in?
What is your secret dream or aspiration?
What is one thing you want to do before you die?
What puzzles you about God?
What is your family like?
What Stresses you out? How do you unwind?
When do you feel that God is far away?
When do you feel closet to God?
What does being Gods creation, made in his Image, mean to you?
What’s the thing you’re most proud of achieving?
What’s the thing you most want to change about yourself?
What did you do in the weekend? What are you doing this weekend?
Is God challenging you to change any aspect of your life?
What’s something you’ve always wanted to do regularly, but just can’t seem to get it together?
What’s something that you regret not doing?
What do you feel most pressured to do in your life?
What do you like most about Jesus?
What scares you most in life?
When was the last time that you felt that God was speaking to you? What was he saying?
What would you most like to change in the world?
How do you deal with people that annoy you?
Have you ever forgiven someone?
What other career path would you also like to have taken?



  1. 2restore Said:

    mmm! excellent …

  2. […] Monday 10 March 2008 at 1:50 pm · Filed under counselling, mental health, relationship ·Tagged counselling, listening, questions, relationships Check out the original article: […]

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