Run through the course with leaders and other Christians to test-run it if you’ve never done it before. This will tease out any issues before you start.
Also, there are commentary videos in the Leader's Area (you'll need to log in) to help you prepare, so watch those!
Maggie Wright, Eastbourne, UK
Don't use Life Explored as a one-off novelty.
Folks in the church need to be constantly made aware that the work of mission is the duty of all and that we need to be building friendships and reaching out to people all the time so they are more likely to respond to invitations to such a course.
Billy Houston, Belfast, UK
People will inevitably engage differently with the opening films. Some Christians will tend to want ‘the point’ to be clearer, whereas the aim of these films is more to open up the issues and provoke people.
That said, depending on your group, it may be worth gently helping participants to link the stories in the films to each session’s theme.
Robin Ham, Barrow-in-Furness, UK
Changing some of the questions to help people grapple with the opening films made a big difference to our conversations.
We started asking ‘who were the characters in the film?’, ‘what were they doing?’ and ‘why?’.
That really helped our folks understand the overall theme in each session, and in turn has helped them study God’s word as we go on to ask the same questions of the Bible passages.
Bryan Martin, Donaghcloney, UK
Follow up is almost more important than the event itself, and at our mum's group with people moving on or going back to work, the challenge to seize the moment is always key.
And don't forget that your group will watch to see how trusting in Jesus impacts your life - and that speaks volumes. One mum said the thing that got her 'off the fence' was seeing how I dealt with a difficult situation calmly and 'without effing and blinding'.
Sue Roseblade, Cowplain, UK
I think it is essential for the course leader/s to understand the theological framework for Life Explored to lead effectively.
Understanding this enables a leader to allow thoughts to develop over the weeks rather than to try and wrap things up neatly too early on.
I would recommend course leaders informally brief any Christians bringing friends on this approach so they can more easily relax when it does not unfold exactly as Christianity Explored does.
Colin Taylor, Felsted, UK