FruitFULL
Suzi Stock, Kevin Mayhew 2012

£14.99 (Approx)
3.8
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Overview

What does it say on the tin?

This resource offers 10 sessions on the topic of fruit of the spirit. It is aimed at Christian youth groups, 11-18, encouraging them to receive God’s Holy Spirit and as a result see Fruit growing in their lives.

There are plenty of activities and reflections to cater for all learning styles. This resource also includes 10 drama scripts, artwork and suggestions for video clips and music to help each young person connect with the material and let their lives be enriched.

What do you get?

This is Suzi Stock’s seventh resource book for Christian youth workers. The book comes spiral-bound, making it easy to lay open and to work from directly. It also makes it easy to photocopy from, especially useful if you are planning on using the drama scripts.

The resource has 10 sessions focusing on the Fruit of The Spirit, as described in Galatians 5:22-23. The first session is an introductory session, introducing the group to the different fruits and explaining how God wants to give them his Holy Spirit to help them grow these fruits in their lives. The following nine sessions unpack each of the nine described fruits of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.

The sessions recommend different music tracks to play (although some may feel they are a bit dated, but could easily be replaced with something similar) as well as sometimes suggesting pieces of art to use to help illustrate and teach, from artists Charlie Mackesy, Pip Wilson and Paul Judson.

There is enough material in each session to last around 90 minutes, but they can be edited down quite easily if you want to run a shorter session.

Who is it for?

It is suggested to be for 11-18s but would probably best suit the younger end of this age range. It is aimed at those who are Christian, as it focuses on God’s Holy Spirit producing these fruits in people.

Review

  • What is the overall quality of material presentation?

    Excellent. Each session is clearly laid out and is easy to follow.

    How clear are its aims and outcomes?

    The resource comes with a brief introduction from Soul Survivor’s Mike Pilavachi, talking about the importance of the Fruit of the Spirit. This is then followed by a 3 page introduction from the author on how she is aiming to get young people looking in depth at these fruit so that God can challenge, transform and renew their lives. Each session begins with a very short introduction to outline the purpose of the session.

    How accessible are the leader’s notes?

    Again, very easy to use. Each session offers a mixture of icebreakers, activities, Bible passages, discussions, reflections and prayer activities, as well as a drama script written by Dave Jenkins. The only exception to this is session 8, Faithfulness: Faithful God, which is delivered as a longer leader-led meditation, exploring the stories of Hosea and the Prodigal Son.

    Who could lead it?

    Anyone who wants to help young people grow in their faith.

    How helpful are the participants’ resources?

    n/a

    How good is any digital material?

    There are a few links to files online. Some of the links don’t work anymore, but can mostly be found by a quick Google search. None of these links are essential, though, to the running of the course.

    How much prep will I have to do?

    The author helpfully lists all the different resources needed for each activity in each session. There is some preparation needed practically to get activities and responses ready. Otherwise the leader needs to read through the session, decide on which elements they wish to use and make sure they familiarise themselves with the Bible passages used.

    Is there website support? Links?

    No

  • How well does it encourage interaction with the group?

    As with most youth work resources, this is designed to be used with a group, relying heavily on participation and discussions.

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

    There is a range of methods used to help connect with each session’s teaching and the Bible is taught in different ways including giving a direct talk, Bible exploration in small groups and a led meditation. Many of the sessions suggest movie clips to use to help illustrate a point.

    How adaptable is it to my situation?

    It should be straightforward, although may need a little more work if you are wanting to use it with older teenagers, as some of the activities may seem a bit young.

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

    Each session concludes with a ‘summary and prayer’ section. This is a great way to help each person connect with what has been taught and to prayerfully consider how it might impact them in the week ahead, as well as allowing God to work in them to produce more of each fruit.

  • How much of the material is Bible-based?

    Every session is based on a fruit of the Spirit and offers a collection of other Scriptures which demonstrate how that session’s fruit can manifest itself in everyday life.

    How well is the biblical material presented and used?

    It is presented simply but effectively, sometimes offering verses to look up and questions to discuss, other times reading out a passage followed by playing a song based on the passage whilst participants contemplate some questions on what they have just heard, followed by a discussion.

    How well does it apply biblical material to everyday life?

    Each session has a drama which helps ground the topic in the everyday, as they are set in the world of young people. However, you might not want to have a sketch performed at every session, unless you have a particularly keen drama-liking group of young people! There is time in each session for the young people to consider how they might see more of the fruit in their lives, and what difference it might make.

    Is there a particular theological perspective?

    An openness to the Holy Spirit and a dependence on being filled.

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

    The course encourages people to display the fruit of the Spirit in all areas of their life.

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

    By allowing God to transform them by his Spirit, the young people become more like Jesus and how he lived.

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

    It helps them to see that the characteristics of Jesus (described by the fruit) can be, and should be, demonstrated by all Christians.

    How well does it connect with real life issues?

    It makes a point of not just discussing each fruit, but how it can make a difference to those around them, as well as thinking through what the difficulties might be (for example, on ‘Goodness’, it talks about the difficulty of not seeking revenge).

  • How well does it encourage personal evangelism?

    Not explicitly, but does mention how being more Christ-like enables those around us to see more of Jesus.

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

    This is not covered.

    How well does it connect with global issues?

    This is not covered.

    How well does it encourage global mission?

    This is not covered.

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