Friday, February 02, 2007

RESOURCE: Indepth, Experiential Training for Prayer Leaders

Preparing Leaders for Reflection and Prayer Days and Short Retreats
Lead Facilitator: Dr. Evelyn Davis
Worship Leaders and Topic Facilitators will be announced
Prayer Coordinators: Fran Woods, Chesley (Tiny) and Ruth Ray

In the U. S.: May 17–26, 2007 at Lutheridge Retreat near Asheville, NC
October 4–13, 2007 at Brookhaven Retreat near Dallas, TX

Overview of Topics for Reflection and Prayer Days

A day of reflection and prayer begins with worship and singing, then there is a brief overview of the topic the group has chosen. Handouts describe the topic, with Bible verses for reference and thought questions for application. There is time for personal reflection and prayer, then the option of praying with someone else or continuing with individual reflection. There is a time of closure, with an opportunity to share.

A Spiritual Inventory and Spiritual Markers

It is helpful to identify spiritual markers in our lives—times when we have encountered God’s call or his direction. Then when we face new options and/or decisions, we can review our spiritual markers to be reminded of the context of the activity of God in our lives—his perspective for our past, our present, and our future. There are guidelines to assist you in working through your spiritual heritage, your salvation experience, times you made decisions regarding your future, and periods of your life when God clearly guided you.

Finding A Rhythm of Rest

We struggle with trying to find time for a real ‘Sabbath’—a time to take our hands from the plow, let our work lay fallow, and let God and others take care of things. However, it is finding that balance point at which, having rested, we do our work with greater ease and joy, and bring healing and delight to our endeavors—for when we are refreshed we can give more generously to others. Jesus found special times to be with the Father, and to pray. During this time of reflection, may we learn how to follow his example.

Life Tasks: Strength for the Journey

There are six life tasks that all adults encounter, with a different emphasis on each during the various decades of life. These materials describe all six, and you will focus on, and pray about, the one(s) that you choose. The tasks are: The Self, Identity (who am I?); Relationships, Intimacy (who will be with me?); Work, Accomplishment (what will I do?); Health, Wholeness, Freedom (can I achieve balance?); Faith, Spiritual Vitality (will my journey be meaningful?); and Commitment, Contribution (can I make a difference?).

Our Time of Need

What are you currently dealing with? Various points of need are listed (with related Bible verses) and there is space to add other needs. You will choose which area(s) to focus on, and pray about. Examples are: unmet needs; struggling with relinquishment; disappointments and discouragements; going through a barren time; health issues; family concerns; praying for a lost friend or a family member; carrying a heavy burden.

Prayer Areas and Issues

This topic focuses on specific prayer areas and issues such as bearing fruit; Bible study and prayer; finances; future direction and decisions; health, home and family; relationships; rest and renewal; restoration of life and ministry; seeking the Lord’s power, strength, and wisdom; service; and submitting to him. There are related Bible verses, questions for reflection, and short readings.

Personal Worship

When the group you are leading chooses a topic that an individual is not interested in, that person can use the time of reflection for a personal focus if desired. Individuals can bring their own retreat materials, or they can use these guidelines (with scriptures) that focus on the following steps: worship; attentiveness; approach the throne; submit to God; confession and forgiveness; prayer for personal protection; guidance; special needs; petitions for yourself, family, friends, church, others; put on Christ and commit the day to him; walk in triumph, freedom, and safety.

The Servant Leader (separate booklet)

Jesus demonstrated the fact that a leader is called to be a servant. The materials describe what leaders must do to follow Jesus’ example. First there must be a servant heart—leadership character; then a servant head—leadership methods; next servant hands—leadership behavior, and most important, servant habits—leadership commitment and renewal. This time of reflection focuses on all four, with thought questions and scripture references.

Overview of the Retreat Topics

These short retreats can be offered to groups over a weekend, or in sessions over a period of several weeks.

Life Passages and the Missionary Experience

How do our missionary experiences impact on the usual life passages? And how can we find the necessary joy and strength to sustain us? We will not experience this retreat during our time together, but an overview will be given the day the group focuses on ‘Life Tasks.’ A set of guidelines for leading this retreat will be included with the manual.

New Testament Images of Adult Growth and Change

What can we discover about the adult learning process from Biblical images? They have important implications for ways we discover spiritual truth, and how our faith can develop and grow. The six images are New Wine, The Body, The Blowing Wind, The Yoke, The Grain of Wheat, and The Bread and Cup. ===>Click headline for location, schedule, and application . .

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