We used this study for a combined high school and young adult Sunday School class that is an hour in length. The videos are approximately 30 minutes each, so it does make it difficult to cover everything in that period. As the leader's guide points out, it is better to have a 90 minute study. The leader's guide contains very helpful information and questions to ask during each session.
* Journals: The journals are a must if you are doing the study. They help participants stay involved and thinking about following Christ each day. They are somewhat unconventional with what they ask you to do, but being taken outside your comfort zone can force you to look at things a little differently. They could have been enhanced by incorporating more Scripture, but the journal is supposed to be a companion to your own study time. Some of our participants could definitely be described as "fans", so it would have been helpful to have a little guidance in the journal.
* Full-length Video: We watched the full-length video prior to getting into the study. There is a lot of overlap between the full-length video and the small group mini-sessions, but it was useful in order to understand the context and in case somebody missed a week so they understood the continuation of the story. This isn't a "must have".
* Book: The study doesn't really incorporate the use of the book. Several examples from the book are in the small group study, but the same order is not used. We had already purchased the books, so we assigned chapters to read on the side.
Absolutely wonderful! I highly recommend this to any group who needs to open the door to great discussions all about Jesus. Our group has had a hard time with RUNNING OUT OF TIME! lol It is so good that we find ourselves needing more time each week. Our group consists of a mixed group of believers: seasoned to new... all find it fantastic and look forward to each weeks meeting. We are reading the main book separately from the DVD series. We watched the DVD for three weeks, took a break and did a "question & answer" time for any topic from the book they wished to discuss. It worked out so well. Our group has really grown into a close FAMILY of believers!
In the middle of the study right now and am LOVING it. From the 1st minutes, the study (which starts each week with a 30-minute episode of a 6-part series) draws you in and makes you think deeply. Nice videography, story, and acting (unlike some "cheesy" Christian films of the past). This is a great study for small groups that are busy with life and don't want to (or simply don't have the time to) have daily homework. Note: there is a journal that the author encourages to be used on a daily basis, but this can be optional and your group members can still be moved to action in their personal lives.