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A 5-session course on prayer for Lent.
At times prayer can seem like hard work or a bit of a mystery. At other times it’s an encounter with the Living God. Wherever you are on the journey of faith, Life Source will encourage a discovery of new-found joy and delight in prayer – for novices and old hands alike.
The course combines Bible study and discussion with a creative, hands-on exploration of five prayer patterns drawn from our rich Christian heritage.
In five interactive sessions this course aims to help groups explore:
90 minutes of material. Leaders’ introduction, and preparation for each session.
Other titles available in the series, each written as a resource for Lent:
Life balance: (see review on this site) Time to Pause / Time to Celebrate / Time to Rest/ Time to Play / Time to Liberate
Life calling: Called by God / Called from within / Called out / Called up / Called on
Life attitudes: (see review on this site) Living Well / Living Openly/ Living Purposefully/ Living Lovingly / Living Differently
Introduction says that the course ‘aims to encourage group members to discover a new-found joy and delight in prayer, to find that it really is our ‘Life source'.' Each session has clear aims at the start.
Substantial introduction explaining how each session works, and the rationale behind them. Encourages choice and imagination, and gives tips on enabling the group dynamics. Each session begins with a ‘Beforehand', containing the aim, list of materials, background to the theme. Session has Welcome; ‘Drawing near' (learning and practising a pattern for prayer, different each time); Time to share (Questions and discussion); Encounter (Bible reading and questions); Do something (choice of prayer-based activities); Go deep (more prayer patterns); suggestions for the week ahead and close. Extra material at the back of book, available for download on chp website. Peppered with inspiring quotes about prayer from a variety of authors who have written about prayer. Layout is a bit dense, and looks a bit dated, and there is quite a bit to read and choose between, as well as digesting the ‘Beforehand'. Not a pick-up-and-run resource.
Plenty of help here, so anyone who is prepared to put in some time for good preparation.
No specific participants' resources, apart from eight A4 pages of extra material on Church House Publishing website. These include some inspiration from Stephen Cottrell, Rowan Williams and some practical pointers.
Some film clips are recommended – of which, most will probably be relevant for a good while yet, but leaders may want to have their own ideas from more contemporary-to-them movies.
Needs a bit of focused preparation, both in choosing the way through the material, and gathering any props.
Just the downloadable A4 sheets, which are fine.
Given that this is a resource about prayer, there is a creative amount of interaction here, with encouragement to try out prayer ‘patterns' together and be honest about how they work.
Again, some good variety, with some liturgical-style responses, individual prayer, and experiencing new ideas together. Particularly good variety of suggestions for the ‘Do something' section.
The resource aims to encourage experience of both ‘given' prayers, and spontaneous expression – in a gentle way. Might suit best those who like the former as well as the latter, as it is a fairly thoughtful resource. Those who prefer to be active while praying may not relate so well – though who knows? This may open up some new ideas.
Emphasis put on practising the prayer patterns in between the sessions, and feeding back to the group.
Encounter section focuses on a relevant Bible passage, with questions to follow.
Some good choices here, and open questions. Reflects a carefully thought-though spirituality.
Focus is on responding to life with and in prayer, acknowledging the challenge of that.
Anglican, and drawing from wide traditions of prayer.
Prayer is seen firstly as spending time with God, and enjoying our relationship with him. Everything else follows from this.
Lots of ideas for different ways of praying, and trying them out. This is coupled with opportunities to discuss the biblical material, so there are good holistic connections between mind, heart and soul.
Some of the ways of praying will doubtless be new to some folk. Most are focused on being still, taking time and developing routines that work personally. Thought-provoking.
Acknowledges well the challenge of prayer. Stuffed with suggestions to make progress with this, on the basis that God loves us whatever. No judgement here.
Not a focus.
Not a focus, though one would hope that engagement with the world will be an outcome from growing in prayer.
Not a focus.
Not a focus