As a church we are really trying to help all ages to get a vision for missional living. We have been experimenting with a tweak on an idea from the London Institute for Contemporary Christinianity called “This Time Tomorrow”
Each Sunday at 10.45am while the children are still part of the main service we have been doing a little interview slot with different members of the congregation.
We ask three questions:
1. What will you be doing at 10.45am on Monday morning?
2. What’s the best thing about being a Christian in the work you will doing?
3. How can we pray for you and the work you do?
Variations on a theme:
A) The in-depth testimony
Because there are always people at our services who are exploring faith its important to ask people to explain how they actually became Christians – it sets an expectation that there are furthers steps to make apart from coming to church, singing the songs and listening to the preaching. It also helps to build faith in the congregation that people actually do become Christians – which hopefully helps to build confidence in the gospel and give people models for how to share it. I listened to a very moving testimony when we first tried this from a young Mum who works as a doctor and yet found crossing the threshold of the door of the place where we met really difficult. It helped the church to consider what we can do to make our church a more welcoming environment.
B) All age
I really want to help our young people to get a vision for what God might be calling them to do for the long term and to help young people participate in the prayer life of our church. So sometimes we have done a parallel interview. Here’s an example – (names have been changed) Johnny is 12 years old, Luke is in his late 40s.
Me: Johnny what will you be doing at 10.45am tomorrow morning
Johnny: I will be in HUM – which is Humanities where we are studying the question “where was God during the Holocaust.” I am studying at the local secondary school, just down the road from here and I am in year 7.
Me: Luke what will you be doing at 10.45am tomorrow morning?
Luke: I work as an engineer and I will be going into a meeting with my Boss where I have to ask him for more money so that i can do a project to help build bridges for the railways.
Me: Johnny what’s the best thing about being a Christian in a HUM lesson?
Johnny: Well a number of things, we are doing our topic on Christianity at the moment and being a Christian gives me a bit of a head start. Also when we have tests at school I know I don’t need to panic as there’s more to life than school.
Me: Luke what’s the best thing about being a Christian and an engineer…
You get the picture, at the end of the interview I asked Johnny to pray for Luke and for Luke to pray for Johnny. it was nice that Johnny followed up with Luke the next week to see how things had gone with the requests made for prayer.
C) Whole church
Sometimes after the interview we ask everyone in the church to talk to the two or three people that are sat around the coffee tables in our service to talk about what they will be doing at 10.45am and to pray for eachother.
Here’s a new one we tried last week – I asked the congreation to send me a photograph (where it is safe and legal to do so) of where they are at 10.45am, then we can use them as a montage in the service next week.
Really open to other ideas, drop me a line.