Before the Session
Facilitator: In advance of the session
- Review today’s scripture text and the session activities to help better facilitate the discussion.
- Have the Bible Background Video ready to view.
- Obtain a stick or ruler to use as a pointing device (see Context)
- Listen to the FaithElement podcast for this session.
- Use the social media prompts on this session’s webpage to help youth begin engaging the session them ahead of their gathering.
Play the Skit Guys video and ask questions like:
- What did you think of the witnessing examples given in this video and why?
- What are some of the bad ways you have experienced people sharing their faith and how did they affect you?
- What would you say is the most effective way to share your faith with someone else and why?
Show this video blog “Chief of Sinners” and ask questions like:
- How would you have answered Adam’s questions?
- Why do you think persons interviewed in the video responded as they did?
Select four or five volunteers and tell them that they are going to tell a story as a group. You will need some kind of stick or ruler to use as a pointer. Have one person start a story about a random subject that you will give them. They will need to continue telling their story while you point at them. Whenever you point at someone else, that person has to continue the story in place of the previous speaker. If you have a competitive group, you might want to eliminate anyone who does not make a seamless transition in the story, encouraging those watching to decide if someone is eliminated.
Play several rounds, or until all the volunteers have had at least one chance to continue the story, then stop and ask questions like:
- In what ways was this activity easy or difficult?
- What was the secret of continuing the story?
- What made for a good versus bad story?
- What would have happened if you were not listening to the story being told?
- In what ways did people try to change the story when it was your turn to speak and why?
- As audience members, if all you knew about these volunteers was the stories you heard them tell, what impressions would you have of them or their message and why?
Read 1 Timothy 1:12-17, then watch the Bible Background Video.
Ask your group:
- What reasons did the writer give for Paul to believe he had been a terrible person?
- What does it say about God that Paul was given mercy and grace, despite his past?
- For what purpose does the writer proclaim that Paul was given mercy?
- In what ways might using a personal story helped the writer present a good witness?
Form pairs and have them sit facing each other. Ask the following questions one at a time giving people time to share their answer with their partner before proceeding to the next question.
- How do you feel about the role of faith in your life and why?
- Who is the most influential spiritual person in your life, and why would you choose that person?
- When have you failed at something so badly that it took you some time to overcome it and what have you learned from the experience?
- Since faith is something that grows in all of us throughout our lives, in ten years, in what way do you hope to see yourself as a person of faith and why?
Bring the large group back together and ask:
- Why do you think it is so important for us to share our personal faith stories?
- In what ways might your own story help you be better at reaching others?
- What do you think is the most important message that your personal experiences might teach someone else and why?
Close this session in prayer
Writer: Don Breeden