We had what we call a creative service at Orchard Baptist yesterday. I started by reading and speaking about a few Bible verses for 5 minutes and then we split into groups to explore the meaning of those verses creatively. Half an hour later we shared the results which included a drama, lots of drawings with explanations, a PPT, some video clips, a prayer written by a 5 year old and a summary of thoughts from our discussion group.
We had a lot of fun and it was great to see people of all ages mixing and having fun together while we learnt together from the Bible.
We were thinking about how God’s presence and light can fill us and bring transformation in us whilst also spreading out to others. I really enjoyed this picture of refraction (once it had been explained to me anyway!) As God’s light shines in and through us, it refracts though us as something beautiful. The prism is just there, it is the light that makes the difference. How good is that!
We learnt creatively from each other rather than listening to a lecture style service that most churches rely on. A lecture style depends on an expert being able to communicate their expertise clearly to everyone and for people to then absorb and process that information. The interactive or collaborative style requires a good facilitator and willing participants. It strikes me that if we do not allow interaction then we are missing out on so much that we can gain from each other. The church is one of the few places left in society that uses the lecture model as its primary method of communication. People can switch off in lectures but when people interact about a subject, it causes them to think and this is a good thing.
It is even more Biblical to be interactive!
How many lecture style talks did Jesus give? You may think lots, but when you read the gospels, Jesus’ teaching was often interactive as he responded to questions or when people asked questions as he spoke.
The Bible says that the church is a body where each part works with the rest to create unity. If we do not allow for interaction then we are ignoring what it means to be a the body that Jesus wants us to be.
If you want to explore this some more, then you can read my thoughts on learning styles and church.
I’ll leave you with the prayer of the 5 year old (who says that young children can’t grasp or understand what we do in church!)
I want to pray all the time.
God is powerful and can take our sins
and we trust you forever.
What a fantastic end to a time focusing on Gods presence transforming us.
We talk to him and receive
God sets us free from our sin and mistakes by offering us a new start.
We trust God to keep filling, transforming and shining through us.
God is in the recycling business and he has not finished with us yet!