“What is the outcome then, brethren? When you assemble, each one has a psalm, has a teaching, has a revelation, has a tongue, has an interpretation. Let all things be done for edification.” I Corinthians 14:26
Singing, prayer, Scripture, sharing, testimonies: all these may be used in various ways and proportions under the guidance of the Holy Spirit so that each member of the body will be a participant and will be edified by the others.
- Guitar or piano accompaniment may be used, or spontaneous, unaccompanied singing.
- Hymns, choruses, folk songs: Keep a healthy balance (Ephesians 5: 19)
- From time to time introduce new songs. (Psalm 40:3; Revelation 5:9)
- Avoid always singing “favorites.” Encourage the person to give a reason for his selection –
perhaps the song has had personal meaning for him in the past week.
- Spontaneous, sentence prayers of praise, perhaps intermingled with a few well-known hymns or choruses.
- Various formats could be used:
- “Thank you Lord for .. .” (fill in with some personal blessing from God in your own life)
- Think of names or titles of Christ and worship Him (e.g. Lamb, Good Shepherd, Mighty God, etc.)
- Worship God for various aspects of His character (love, justice, power, etc.) or for His works (creation, Christ’s death, the Holy Spirit’s help. etc.)
- Use the words of a Psalm or some other Scripture: unison, responsively, antiphonally, etc. This could be followed by sentence prayers based on the truths of that particular Scripture
Confession: “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” I John 1:9 “Therefore, confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another, so that you may be healed.” James 5:16.
A study of a particular portion of Scripture may lead to conviction of individual sin(s). A small group provides a good setting for individuals to confess specific sins to God, claim the cleansing of Christ’s blood (I John 1:7), and pray for one another in the areas of need.
- Requests mentioned and then prayed for spontaneously.
- Requests mentioned with different ones indicating by raising the hand that they will remember a request.
- Pass out prayer cards, one request per card.
- Go immediately to prayer with each individual remembering his own request (this saves time and repetition).
- Encourage the sharing of personal needs. From time to time, such needs could be shared by each one around a circle with the person immediately to the right bearing up the petition to God.
- Petitions along a particular theme, e.g.: unsaved friends, needs and ministries of the church, needs suggested by the portion of Scripture studied that night, etc.
- PROVIDE TIMES TO REPORT ANSWERS TO PRAYER WITH AN ACCOMPANYING TIME OF PRAISE TO GOD FOR HIS FAITHFULNESS. KEEP A LIST.
- Pray in large groups, small groups, triangles, pairs.
- Don’t always pray in a seated position. In the Bible, they stood, knelt, or even fell on their faces!!!!
III. Scripture, Sharing and Testimony
a. Open Sharing: as in I Corinthians 14:26. A time for each one to have opportunity to share a truth from Scripture, a testimony out of their own recent experience of God’s goodness, a song, a prayer need (take up the matter in prayer immediately), etc.
b. Directed Sharing:
a. Go around the circle with each one sharing a joy of the past week (“Every good thing bestowed and every perfect gift is from above …” James 1:17)
b. Recent answers to prayer
c. Sharing truths that God has taught you from the Scriptures (Encourage much sharing of Bible truth with one another)
d. Read a particular passage from Scripture and share truths about God, or commandments to obey, or promises to claim, etc.
e. Special times of sharing after retreats, etc.
f. Ask several beforehand to share along certain lines.
These are just some of the possibilities. Don’t become discouraged ~ the young people are reluctant at first to enter into such spiritual sharing. Hymns, prayer, praise, Scripture-truth, mutual sharing for edification, worship – these were the very life of the New Testament church meeting, the channels through which the Holy Spirit dwelt and moved among His people. Is it not worth the effort and patience? Don’t try to force things. Trust the Holy Spirit to make the young people to come alive to His ways. Individual sharing and prayer with those who are more eager to follow Christ will encourage them to take the lead in the Body Life meetings.