A Campaigners Guide: How To Draw Near To God

Drew Hill March 23, 2021

Trying to figure out what to do at Campaigners this week?
Below is a 45-minute outline you can steal!

Campaigners: Habits

Show your Campaigners group this picture and ask them if they know what it is.

It’s “the quietest place on earth!”

Pull up this article below and have someone read it out loud:

Earth’s Quietest Place Will Drive You Crazy In 45 Minutes

Ask them why they think that being quiet is so terrifying and spend some
time discussing it.

Then transition to looking at scripture and asking the question “What
did being quiet look like for Jesus?”

*I’d recommend putting up your phones after you show them the pic and read
the article. Try using actual physical copies of the Bible instead of the YouVersion app. Part of our job is to teach kids how to read the Bible and it’s much easier to do when we aren’t distracted by the other apps on our phones. Ask your friends to bring their Bibles to Campaigners and bring extra Bibles if you can. Your YL office probably has some sitting around, but you can also buy them cheap at used bookstores and thrift stores. 

Ask 3 folks to look up the following verses and read them out loud. 

Matthew 14:13- When Jesus heard what had happened, he withdrew by boat privately to a solitary place.

Luke 6:12- It was at this time that He went off to the mountain to pray, and He spent the whole night in prayer to God.

Mark 1:35- In the early morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house, and went away to a secluded place, and was praying there.

Ask them to look at what happens before and after those instances in scripture.

– In Matthew, Jesus had just learned that his cousin had been murdered. He likely runs to his Father for comfort in his sadness.

– In Luke, Jesus spends the whole night in prayer, seeking wisdom from his Father before selecting the 12 disciples.

– In Mark, after Jesus prays, he encounters a demon-possessed man. Being with his Father is vital before encountering evil.

Ask them if they’re facing any situation where they need comfort, wisdom, or strength to face evil and temptation. Allow some time for them to answer.

Have someone else read Luke 5:16. “But Jesus Himself would often slip away to the wilderness and pray.”

Ask them if they have a regular rhythm of being silent and being alone with the Lord.

Spend some time discussing some potential habits they could put into place in order to “practice the presence of God.” If you’ve never read the classic little book from Brother Lawrence, it’s worth far more than the $2.

A helpful way to give them some practical steps is to show some of these videos from Justin Earley

Justin wrote a super helpful book called The Common Rule. In it, he suggests 4 daily habits and 4 weekly habits. I’ve trimmed those down to 2 and 2 that you can see below.

Daily and Weekly Habits

Inspired by “The Common Rule” by Justin Earley

Daily Kneeling Prayer

Make this the first thing you do when you awake each morning and the last thing you do before you go to bed. To help make this easier, don’t charge your phone in your bedroom.

Morning: “Father, Son, and Holy Spirit- Remind me throughout this day of your amazing love for me, and help me, in turn, to love both you and others.”

Evening– “Father, Son, and Holy Spirit- Thank you for loving me today. May my body and my mind rest in your love. Amen.”

Daily Scripture before Screen

Before you look at a screen each day, spend 5 minutes reading the Bible. Consider reading the Gospel of Mark. There are 16 chapters. You could read about half a chapter each day and finish the book in a month. Circle one word, phrase, or verse each day and try to remember it throughout the day.

Weekly Spiritual Conversation

Take one-month and spend 30-minutes each week of that month face-to-face or a phone conversation with a more mature follower of Jesus. Ask them to help teach you how to listen to the voice of God. This could be you, as their YL leader, but I’d encourage you to connect them with someone else in your church who could partner with you in discipling kids.

Weekly Media Fast

Try and estimate how much time you spend each week on social media, watching streaming video, and playing video games- and consider cutting it in half for a month. For example, if you regularly watch an average of 10 hours/week of Netflix, you would limit yourself to 5 hours/week. You could also pick a day of the week to fast from media.

After you discuss those 4 habits, here are some questions for you to discuss.

Campaigners Questions

1. What is typically the first thing you do after you wake up and the last thing you do before you go to sleep? How do you think those habits affect you?

2. Which of the 4 habits above would be the hardest for you
to do and why? Are you willing to try any of them for the next month? Do you want us to help hold you accountable to doing them?

3. What do you think is the point of doing a new habit or fasting from something? Is it to make you a better person? Look up James 4:8. It says “Come near to God and he will come near to you.” That’s why we do these habits- to draw near to God!

4. Have you ever heard the voice of Jesus? Probably not audibly, but when have you encountered the presence of Christ? Where were you? Why do you think it happened at that place and at that time?

5. What do you think the voice of Jesus wants to say to you?

6. How can we pray for you this week?

Looking for a book to read together with your Young Life area or team?

You can currently buy ALONGSIDE in bulk discount on NewGrowthPress.com.

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