How often have you struggled to help your students really grasp Gods love? How often have you been frustrated by their Sunday school answers when you try to draw them into the depths of Gods story? Youre not alone. Many students (and even youth workers brave enough to admit it) are experiencing emptiness, lack of passion, and a growing inability to hear from God.But there is hope. Just use your imagination
God created our imaginations. Why not harness them to encounter our creative God in brand new ways? Try it right now: Picture yourself in a boat with Jesus as the seas grow rough, as the water crashes over the bow. Notice whats going on
notice your emotions at this critical moment. What is your sense of Jesus presence in the midst of the storm?The latter is just one example of the many guided exercises within the pages of Imaginative Prayer for Youth Ministry. Youll find tools that can help you use imaginative prayer as a means of experiencing the God who is continually reaching out to us. Invite your students to open their imaginations (and their five senses) to Gods spirit and allow God to move and speak directly to them through the 50 imaginative prayer exercises inside. They come complete with instructions, environment suggestions, and optional debrief questionstheres even a topical/Scripture reference index so you can find just the right exercises to suit your needs. If you want to introduce your students to the God who loves them (in a way that allows them to truly experience that love), imaginative prayer is an effective means to do soyou and your students will never be the same.
Jeannie Oestreicher has been volunteering in youth ministry for the past eighteen years. She and her husband, Mark, have two great kids, Liesl and Max. They live in California.
Larry Warner is executive director of b a ministry that provides spiritual direction, contemplative retreats, and holistic leadership development for pastors, ministry leaders, and church staffs. (Visit the b website at www.b-ing.org.) Warner is also a spiritual director and an adjunct professor at Bethel Seminary in San Diego, and he directs the training and ongoing development of spiritual directors. He spent twelve years as a youth pastor in the Los Angeles area, six years as a Los Angeles County Deputy Sheriff, and another ten years as a senior pastor in San Diego.