Just walk across the room

Just Walk Across the Room: Simple Steps Pointing People to Faith
Bill Hybels with Ashley Wiersma, Zondervan, 2006

£35.00 (Approx)
4.2
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Overview

What does it say on the tin?

A Four-week Experience to Equip Your Church for Evangelism in Today’s World! In Just Walk Across the Room, Bill Hybels brings personal evangelism into the twenty-first century with a natural and empowering approach modelled after Jesus himself. When Christ “walked” clear across the cosmos more than 2,000 years ago, he had no forced formulas and no memorized script; rather, he came armed only with an offer redemption for people like us, many of whom were neck-deep in pain of their own making.

This dynamic four-week experience is designed to equip and inspire your entire church [or small group] to participate in that same pattern of grace-giving by taking simple walks across rooms – leaving your circles of comfort and extending hands of care, compassion, and inclusiveness to people who might need a touch of God’s love today.

What is it?

Pack with DVD, book of the same name (hardcover), CD-ROM, Large A5 Participant’s guide and small A5 Leader’s guide. CD-ROM has sermon transcripts, implementation guide and promotional materials.

DVD with four sessions for small groups:

  1. The Single Greatest Gift.
  2. Living in 3D.
  3. The Power of Story.
  4. Grander Vision Living.

Resources available separately also, so small group resource could be purchased without the Whole church curriculum.

Who is it for?

Whole church, small group, adult, beginning, growing

Cost?

Pack: approx £35.00. www.amazon.co.uk. Available separately www.eden.co.uk

Review

  • What is the overall quality of the material?

    Neat glossy books and DVD cover. Well-presented video material and books. Well laid out, particularly the participant's guide. CD-ROM material is of similar great quality.

    How clear are its aims and outcomes?

    Clear and easy to understand. Realistic about the challenge and opportunities of ‘taking a genuine interest in another human being'.

    How accessible are the leader's notes?

    Clear and straight-forward to use. DVD: instructions guide the session very clearly. It is recommended that the leader read the relevant chapters from the book also, to grasp the subject. The DVD presentation is clear and the instructions are easy to follow. The leader's notes are mostly practical as the session material apart from the DVD is all in the participant's guide. There are some guiding notes as to how to lead the group through the material however, on a discussion basis, including response to the DVD and biblical material. Suggestions for prayer close each session. CD-ROM: has extra material on how to lead a small group. It also contains inspirational material for leaders plus an entire church programme that assumes a motivated team to help make it happen. But it could be scaled down to suit. It contains all materials for sermons plus powerpoints, transcripts, how to make the resource into a whole church programme, including promotional material and timeline. Everything you need and more. Great quality.

    Who could lead it?

    For small groups, a leader with some experience would be best, as the topics may provoke reactions among participants that need wise handling (the sessions on suffering and joy in particular. Someone with heavy burdens to carry may find these challenging and need encouragement). However, the resource itself is easy to use, and the material inspiring and grounded. For the whole church, a team would definitely be best, as there is a significant amount of preparation involved. The church leader or leaders should head it up to ensure whole church involvement.

    How helpful are the participants' resources?

    Participants are recommended to read the accompanying chapters from the book Just Walk Across the Room before the small group meeting, but the material would work anyway. There is also action linked to the whole-church presentation, which could be skipped if just using the small group material (though there are some great ideas for this). The participant's guide itself contains all the discussion material, accompanying notes for the topic, plenty of space for notes around the DVD presentation and discussions, and plenty of follow-up homework for between sessions. These are clearly laid out, comprehensive and are a cross between a workbook and topic teaching. Very hopeful and enabling, with thoughtful questions that should lead to creative and personal ways ahead for all.

    How good is any digital material?

    Very good. DVD leads the small-group session clearly and is easy to use. Bill Hybels introduces the session, provides around 15 minutes of teaching and closes it as well. Interesting background settings and input from others too. Great examples of natural evangelism. The DVD is obviously American, but the teaching should be widely applicable to Western-style audiences. CD-ROM has great and comprehensive material for all, whether small group or whole church.

    How much prep will I have to do?

    For small groups, the session would be best lead with good preparation – if possible reading the chapters from the book as suggested, but at least viewing the DVD material and looking through the passages for discussion. The material itself recommends 10 minutes if not pre-viewing or pre-reading; otherwise add the 15 minute preview plus chapters. For whole church, there is a significant amount of preparation, lead-in time, promotion, and co-ordination. A team to work on this would be best. However, this is a well-grounded and inspiring resource which deserves good preparation and leading.

    Is there website support? Links?

     

    Is it dated?

    No

  • How well does it encourage interaction with the group?

    Very well. Apart from the DVD, each session is designed around discussion, both biblically-based and applied. Honesty is encouraged.

    How well does it cater for a variety of both learning and delivery styles?

    The mix of DVD, reading, writing notes, interacting with questions and discussion should suit many. No hands-on.

    How adaptable is it to my situation?

    Should work for many groups, who are prepared to engage with discussion and reading. Although it is designed for 60 minutes, it could well take longer as the group interacts with the subject. The leader's guide suggests flexibility suitable to your group however, including sensitivity to any who might be affected by subjects raised. It might need a bit of tweaking for UK users, bearing in mind the complex UK attitudes towards the topic of God.

    How well does it encourage people to work together in applying the material?

    Honest discussion encouraged. Clear ideas for trying out new ideas for relating to others in genuine love-based care, letting God set the agenda. The between-session ‘homework' is clearly important and takes the topic further for each individual.

  • How much of the material is Bible-based?

    At least 33%. All the topics are centred around the biblical material, woven in with how we interact with them.

    How well is the biblical material presented and used?

    Good opportunities to engage with relevant passages to the topics, with thought-provoking questions that should lead to personal responses.

    How well does it apply biblical material to everyday life?

    Biblical examples of people coming to faith provide the bedrock of this resource, with the invitation to explore how the various principles apply today.

    Is there a particular theological perspective?

    Evangelical but would suit a broad audience. The understanding of coming to faith is balanced between ‘the bottom-line of love' and evangelical explanations such as ‘the bridge', ‘do versus done' and ‘the morality ladder'.

  • How well does it inspire people towards whole-life discipleship?

    The focus on developing relationships across which God can walk is bound to challenge weaker areas of our own discipleship journey, with the potential for growth. Based on the concept of genuine love and care for others.

    How well does it encourage and enable people to grow in their faith?

    Session 3 focuses on telling our own story of faith well. Great exercise in itself, plus the potential of actually telling it to others and seeing God at work.

    How well does it stretch faith and vision of God and his purposes?

    For those who are nervous about ‘evangelism' as a concept, this resource turns it inside out and makes it possible. Huge opportunity for growth plus opportunity to see God at work in the lives of those who do not yet know him.

    How well does it connect with real life issues?

    Realistic and well-grounded resource. Real-life examples on DVD. Aim is to move people just ‘one tick' towards faith rather than all the way in one jump.

  • How well does it encourage personal evangelism?

    Obviously this is the whole point of the resource. It should succeed very well – it is biblical, practical, kind, and enabling.

    How well does it encourage local or network-based community involvement?

    The understanding of evangelism is based on ‘the bottom-line value of love' no matter whether people come to faith or not.

    How well does it connect with the global issues?

    Not a focus.

    How well does it encourage global mission?

    Not a focus, though implicit in the subject.

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