Going AWOL

So I went away for a little while from writing my blog, but I’m back! It’s not that I was absent from writing, just blog writing. Over the past seven weeks, I have been writing a curriculum for my church’s small groups. It has been a long, tedious, and involved process, but as of Sunday, I’m done! As I aspire to write books and Bible studies of my own one day, it was a great project to take on.

Our church was studying the work of a Methodist Bishop, Robert Schnase. He wrote a book in 2007 called Five Practices of Fruitful Congregations. In 2010, he wrote a companion text entitled Five Practices of Fruitful Living. Our pastor is spurring a sort of revival from within in our congregation. Through these practices, we are refocusing our efforts, streamlining the ill-used Methodist committee system, and getting back to the basics of a church-fellowship, worship, discipleship, and mission. It’s going really well so far. The concept was for the sermons to revolve around the practices at a congregational level, interested lay members to read the second work about the practices at the personal level, and the small groups to discuss the implementation of the practices on both levels. My task was to write the curriculum for the last part.

It was a great exercise for me, because I got to grapple with all the mechanics of designing a curriculum from layout to implementation. (Thanks to my small group leader, I was able to teach session 3 and 5.) The nice part was that the content was already done. I simply synthesized Schnase’s work, rather than tackling the massive research necessary to write an original piece of work.

On one hand, I am ready to let the creative juices flow, do the research, and write an original study. And on the other hand, it was a lot of work and I am looking forward to a little break. Regardless, I plan expound on some of the great lessons I gleaned from his work, concepts and stories that really moved me, challenged me, and convicted me. I hope my future musing will serve to encourage you as well.

So what does the completed study look like? Here it is. Five Values Take a look. I’d love some feedback.



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