Each of our hearts is an open book to Christ. And because His aim is to restore our hearts to their original design, He continually asks us questions to reveal the true nature of our heart. This is the process of spiritual formation. The question is, do we cooperate with him?
Jesus used an analogy from creation about how wine ferments and bloats a wineskin to explain the reality of becoming a new creation (2 Cor. 5:17) and entering into relationship with God. Consider what dominant cultural views you think should be confronted today and go outdoors like Jesus did, and look for an analogy from nature to explain what you want to confront.
Mark 2:1-17 give us a real life example of how four friends displayed a kind of mountain-moving faith on behalf of their paralyzed friend.
The whole point of a good inductive Bible study is to help your participants understand the meaning of the passage and then to lead them through application questions that relate to their life in the here and now.
All wilderness leaders need to have some training in in first aid. Knowing how to assess and treat minor injuries and keep serious casualties stable can make a difference. Similarly wilderness ministry leaders can assess the spiritual wellness of their participants and begin to treat the cause of each symptom.
There are two types of Bible Study questions. Ones that invite participation and open dialogue, and others that throw a wet blanket on conversation and leave the leader paralyzed in the discomfort of silence. How do you phrase a question that will invite participation?
Here we begin a three part series, “3 Steps to Writing Well-Crafted Outdoor Bible Study Questions.” My single objective is to remove the “barrier of entry” to effective wilderness ministry by giving Christian outdoor leaders a topo map that leads to competence and confidence in the skill of crafting awesome Bible-reflection questions for the wilderness setting.
Be intentional. When you head out into the outdoors, realize that this is an opportunity to combine the fun of recreation and adventure with an opportunity to connect with God, hear his voice, and realign your mission in life to glorify Christ.
The wilderness is teeming with colorful stained-glass windows of sky colors that settle our souls into God’s presence and make boring doctrines relevant again. We need more leaders in the church who understand this and will step up and lead others into wilderness experiences to help them grow in worship and awe of their Creator.
The writers of the Psalms learned so much of their wisdom from going outside and looking at the cycles of nature. Psalm 103:15-17 is about how to not spread yourself thin so you will pass on a legacy.