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Grow in Your Relationships with other Christians

The back of each card (not pictured here) has all the information you need to get started on your chosen growth area.  These additional resources –  such as extra Scriptures, Tips, Downloads and Links – can help you go deeper with each card!

Church: Meeting with Other Christians

Scriptures

Matthew 16.18:  Jesus Promised to Build His Church

1 Corinthians 12:  The Church is the body of Christ

Ephesians 5:22-33:  The Church is the Bride of Christ

Colossians 1.18:  Jesus is the Head of the Church

Hebrews 10.25:  Do Not Give Up Meeting Together

Tips and Ideas

  • Consider reading through or studying the book of Acts to learn more about the early Church

Links

Acts Part 1:  Watch to Learn about the start of the Church

Acts Part 2:  Watch to Learn about the expansion of the Church

Prayer: Praying with Others

Scriptures

Matthew 18.19-20:  Jesus is with Christians When they Pray Together

Acts 1.14:  Prayer Was a Normal Part of Jesus’ First Followers Life

Ephesians 6.18:  Paul Instructs Us to Pray in the Spirit

1 Timothy 2.8:  Paul Wants Men to Pray Together

1 John 5.14-15  God Hears Us When We Pray

Tips and Ideas

  • Consider keeping a group prayer journal to record prayer requests and answers
  • Don’t wait for ‘prayer time’ to pray for someone who shares something they need or something difficult. Stop and briefly pray there and then.
  • Prayer Activity: Go on a prayer walk and pray for the people and places you come across
  • Prayer Activity: If young people are shy about praying out loud, have them write prayers on a piece of paper, scrunch them up and throw them up the middle.  Then take turns choosing a piece of paper and reading the prayer.
  • Prayer Activity: If young people are struggling to know what to pray for, suggest they can say: God Thank You For…, God Help Me With… or God Help Someone I Know With…
  • Prayer Activity: Choose an object in the room that represents something you want to pray for.  Take turns sharing your object, or exchanging objects, and praying.

Links

Visit the 24-7 prayer website for loads of prayer ideas, prayer rooms you can join and even a prayer course!

Openness: Talking about what God is doing in me

Scriptures

1 Peter 3.15:  Always be Ready to Talk About Your Hope in God

Tips and Ideas

  • Model openness and talking naturally about God with your young people. Don’t wait for a specific teaching or meeting time.  Share what God is teaching you and what you are hearing from Him
  • Encourage young people that they don’t have to ‘have it all together’ before they can talk about God. Just like Jesus’ first followers, they will sometimes get things wrong, but they can still talk about God.
  • Build time into your groups to ask young people what they are hearing from God and what God is doing in their lives

Challenge: Speaking the Truth in Love

Scriptures

Proverbs 27.6:  True Friends Speak the Truth Even When it Hurts

Hebrews 12.5-6:  Correction Hurts, But it is Good for Us and is Loving

Tips and Ideas

  • Be aware of the common ‘you do you’ mindset and that we do not have the right to challenge others about their actions
  • Consider reading Matthew 7.1-6 and talking about the famous ‘Judge not, lest ye be judged’ phrase that is often quoted by even non-Christians. What did Jesus mean by this?  Did he mean never to correct?
  • Consider gentle ways to introduce a challenge such as “I thought I saw you do ____” or “I thought I heard you say _____” Was that accurate?

Links

Watch the Discipleship Diagnostic training video on the Invitation/Challenge Matrix

Welcoming: Being Friendly to New People

Scriptures

Leviticus 19.33-34:  God Instructed the Israelites to Love Strangers

2 Samuel 14.14:  God is Always Finding Ways to Help People Find Him

Matthew 25.35-36:  Welcoming People was Important to Jesus

Romans 15.7:  Accepting One Another Brings Praise to God

1 Peter 4.9:  We Should be Glad to be Hospitable to Others

Tips and Ideas

  • Acknowledge that crossing the room is often the most difficult step
  • Sit next to new people to make them feel comfortable
  • Try to remember the names of new people
  • Try to find things you enjoy and have in common
  • Introduce them to other people in your group
  • Learn to ask good questions – ABC Questions
  • Consider following up with new people who visit your church or group by sending a card or simple gift

Serving: Putting Others First

Scriptures

1 Corinthians 4.7:  We Have no Reason to Think we are Better Than Others

Philippians 2.5-11:  Our Attitude Should be Like Jesus’ Who Took on the Nature of a Servant

1 Peter 4.7-11:  We Should Serve in God’s Strength

Tips and Ideas

  • Brainstorm different serving tasks and roles in your youth group and church
  • Consider a ‘Servant Towel’ travelling trophy or Star of the Week type reward to recognise a person who has served well
  • Consider a foot washing exercise in your group, washing each other’s feet and praying for each other (only if trust is high in your group)
  • Find someone in your church who serves well. Interview or celebrate this person
  • Engage in a service activity together for someone in your church who has a need
  • Find stories of Christian servants online

Conflict: Making Things Right Between Us

Scriptures

Genesis 45:  Joseph Forgives His Brothers

Matthew 6.14-15:  Our Ability to Forgive or not Forgive Others Shows How Much we Understand God’s Forgiveness of Us

Matthew 18.21-35:  The Parable of the Servant Who Wouldn’t Forgive

Luke 23.34:  Jesus Asked His Father to Forgive His Killers

Acts 7.50:  Stephen Asked the Father to Forgives His Killers

Tips and Ideas

  • Consider reading through or doing a study on Genesis 45 (see above)
  • Share your own examples of when you decided to forgive others, how difficult it was to do it and the results
  • Search YouTube for examples of victims who forgave the people who hurt them (Corrie TenBoom is a great historical example)
  • Conduct a bit of online research about bitterness and the negative effects on health

encouraging: Building Others UP

Scriptures

Acts 4:36:  Barnabas, the ‘Son of Encouragement’

Tips and Ideas

  • Be vigilant to not let banter get out of control in your group or between individuals. Know the line between healthy and unhealthy
  • As a group go and see each other’s sports matches, productions, etc
  • Encouragement Activity: Write each person’s name on a slip of paper and put it into a bowl.  Take turns drawing names and saying something encouraging about that person
  • Encouragement Activity: ‘Web of Encouragement’.  Have the group sit in a circle.  Get a ball of string and hold onto one end.  Throw the ball to one person and say something you see them do well or one thing you appreciate about them.  They then hold onto their part of the string, throw the ball to someone else and repeat, until the string makes a web, visualizing the way encouragement can hold us together
  • Encouragement Activity: Trade names and write encouragement notes to each other before the next group

Listening: I Hear You

Scriptures

Job 2.11-13: Job’s friends sat with him quietly for seven days when he was hurting (They didn’t do so well after the seven days!)

Tips and Ideas

  • Practice the suggestions listed on the back of the card for Active Listening, Basic Empathy and Open-Ended Questions
  • During group sharing times, be intentional about having group members show empathy before asking questions or giving advice
  • Talk about the power of asking questions rather than giving advice when we want to help someone
  • Listening Activity: ‘Tennis ball volley’.  A good conversation is like a good tennis match…you need to keep the ball moving!  Choose one person to be the Listener and one to be the Talker.  Give the Listener a tennis ball.  Every time they ask a question, they throw the ball to the Talker.  Then the Talker throws the ball back to the Listener who asks another question.

Links

Brene Brown on Empathy:  A short video that shows the power of empathising vs telling or advice-giving

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