Finally for a faith based post after my weekend at Deep Impact. (The first one, at least!) I took lots of notes in the sessions at the weekend and it’s something I actually found really helpful. Jotting down either things that stood out to me because they made sense, or because they didn’t. And some were just quotes or song lyrics that I liked. The process of writing it all down and being able to look back over them helps me to process what I think. There was a large number of people sitting with pen and paper, or with the notes app on their phone, writing things down throughout the sessions. There were even people doodling or sketching away, using their own talents to make sense of what they were hearing. I really liked it, but how many people do that on a weekly basis in Church? Certainly in mine, very very few, if any. If I took a note pad out and started writing during the sermon I’d no doubt be judged for being weird, or being disrespectful and not listening, and would have to justify to some that it was actually taking notes to help me process what was being said, for the sake of strengthening my relationship with God. (Oh, and I can only imagine the response if I took my phone out to start taking notes!!)
Anyway, rant over 😉, I thought I’d share some of the questions I took down in the first session about prayer. I’m not sure how many people really read this blog and after posting 3 days in a row, anyone who did read it is probably bored now. But I’d be really interested to hear anyone’s opinions on the questions below. I had many discussions over the weekend, (and actually, there are parts that I’ve become closer to figuring out myself over the last couple of days) but would love to hear different people’s takes on it. So…
How do we lead others to Christ if we haven’t experienced it for ourselves? It is difficult to get excited about a place I never go (prayer). How can I get others excited if I’m not?
This is actually something I had been thinking about prior to the weekend. I’m enthusiastic about my welfare role in the youth band, and I’m passionate about helping other young people develop their faiths…but I do feel like a bit of a hypocrite standing doing devotions or preaching at them when I’m pretty clueless and confused myself. Is that ok? Can we really bring others to God without completely understanding it or having experienced it ourselves? Is that possible? Without knowing if we’ve had that real experience of God?
Step beyond knowledge, and into experience of intimacy with God.
This point struck me quite hard and I love the way it is phrased. We can know everything there is to know about prayer and God, but there’s a huge difference between knowledge of it and experience and practice of it.
– But how do you know if you’re doing it right? What constitutes ‘experience’? Is there a certain way to do it? A certain amount of practice that is needed to qualify as ‘experience’? (My reasoning behind these questions is that you could pray a prayer everyday, that is generic and has little thought or passion behind it…but does it still count as real prayer and intimacy with God? People often compare a relationship with God to a relationship with a friend, in that if you don’t put in the effort, your relationship will not become/remain close. If you only speak to a friend about superficial things and only do it out of habit, your relationship probably won’t grow. Surely the same thing goes here?)
It is easier to trust him and worship him wholly and passionately when we see his face and meet with him regularly
But HOW do we ‘see’ him or ‘meet’ with him? What does this really mean? As I said in my last post, I am someone who values and craves deep relationships, and I would love to experience that with God – after all if what the bible says is true, then that should be the most special, important, and intimate relationship of all right? I just don’t really understand how to achieve it.
Any answers/suggestions/opinions would be welcomed! As I said in my last post, i love having proper honest conversations with people and I love the fact that this blog often opens up opportunities to do that!
“I’ve seen many searching for answers far and wide, but i know we’re all searching for answers only you provide; ‘Cause you know just what we need before we say a word.”