Whenever I guide a group through the spiritual disciplines, I ask the question, "What comes to mind when you hear the words spiritual disciplines?" Often, the response is "fasting" or "working harder" as they study the Bible!
While these two topics certainly are part of the picture, there are numerous options for understanding and experiencing spiritual disciplines that become the root of our spiritual formation. Without paying attention to and implementing a wide range of these valuable and necessary practices, we cannot develop an intimate relationship with Christ, mature in our spiritual journey, or be the witness for Christ to which we have been called.
The on-going practice of reflective story telling, reflective Bible reading and listening, reflective journaling, and reflective prayer, to name a few, can become significant experiences within a small-group setting.
The practice of reflective storytelling allows each person to not only tell their own story, but also to hear from the other group members about their journey into faith and the unique manner in which the Holy Spirit's presence has guided them into God's family. Sharing stories is a powerful way to contribute to the on-going spiritual growth shared between group members throughout the duration of their small-group experience.
Group leaders can spur creativity in this practice by providing paper and colored pens, then asking each person to share their story by illustrating five or six spiritual highs or lows in their life. This practice can lead to an amazing bond of self-disclosure and trust within a group. It is informative and sometimes emotional, and should be considered when small ...