Faithelement session pages provide a lot of questions to use to prompt conversation in your group each week. You might wonder, “what is the correct answer” to the questions asked.
There are different kinds of questions. Some questions deal with matters of fact, for example, “what did Jesus’ father do for a living?” Other questions are not so clear-cut, such as, “how do you think Joseph felt when his brothers betrayed him?” We do not know how he felt, but we can speculate about it — an exercise that may help us better understand the powerful emotions and choices made in a passage.
Faithelement largely offers questions that do not have obvious or known answers. As such, the teacher or group leader need not feel as though they have the answers either. The goal of a group’s time together is to dig deeper into the meaning of the selected text, and to do so means genuinely asking questions — many of which deal with how WE approach the text, or how it might affect us.
When youth or adults gather for Bible study, they bring lives full of experiences, feelings, memories and struggles. Faithelement believes that gathering around the text literally means bringing those experiences, feelings, memories and struggles. The goal is to grow in faith… not have the correct answers. In fact, we assume that we should approach the scriptures and God with humility, admitting that we will never fully grasp the meaning of scripture, or fully understand God and God’s activity. But we grow as we strive to ask good questions and connect the scriptures with our lives.
Perhaps an example is helpful. When learning to be a good friend, we could read about friendship and learn from others’ experiences. But real learning happens when we actually try to be a friend to someone… bringing our feelings, experiences and struggles with us. Growing in faith is a similar, foggy journey.
We encourage your group to use the questions provided as conversation starters… conversations about the possible feelings and experiences of those in the text, and about the lives and faith of those in the conversation.
The goal is not to have the right answers, but rather to grow in faith by struggling with real questions.