Friday, February 23, 2007

Enter through the Narrow Way

For Lent this year (and for our new town wide youth service Cross-Section which starts on Sunday) we've got a Prayer zone (kinda labyrinth like but not quite really) based on the story of the Prodigal Son.

Prodigal son labyrinth

1 Demanding – want wall catalogues – what do you want? make your wish list of all you want in life and take it with you.

2 Dividing the wealth (bowl of mixed “coins” and stones with words on like responsibility loving family WORDS FOR STONES:
Take a cupful from the bowl and pick out the coins and "jewels" to take with you.

3 Living it up – party time. Life can be one non-stop party no responsibilities but is there more? The bubbles don’t last long; once the party popper’s popped all that’s left is something to tidy up.
Hand over your coins and take a balloon – roll up your wish list and place it inside the balloon. Then inflate the balloon as big as you can without bursting it but do not tie it. Hold it as you move on...

4 Party’s over
Sometimes Life’s not all fun. We feel lost and alone. Let go of the balloon and see its useless deflated form Take out your wish list and leave your deflated balloon. If our life is full of party party party it can be fairly empty. Look at yourself in the mirror and turn over the timer. Keep looking at yourself until the sand runs out. think about the things in your life you really need to change. What shoud you do more of? What you should do less of or stop altogether? What should you start doing?

5 In the poo
In the rubbish there are some sweets but they’re hidden among all the rubbish. (or in the sand?) Try to find one (and keep it to eat later if you want to) just like the sweetness of finding God in a dark time in your life.

6 Decision time
It is possible to follow God. God can be found anywhere even when you’re in the poo.
Look at the wish list you made? How much is for yourself and how much is for God and for others. Rip it up and put it in the rubbish bin

7 Coming Clean
Wash your hands and put behind you all your own wants and ask God to show you what you should be doing for him and for other people.

8 Welcome Home
When the son returned to his father the Father ran eagerly to meet him and fed him. Eat the bread and drink the juice. Picture yourself as part of the family of God.

9 Big Brother – The prodigal’s brother wasn’t too happy. He resented the welcome his brother received. Even when we’ve admitted our own mistakes we can resent the attention shown to others…

...How can you show welcome to people who come to faith or who come to your
church for the first time?

...Go out from here and say hello to someone you don’t know and pray for them.

Update: Interestingly Jonny Baker has been using the same Prodigal Son picture at Lee Abbey and I also found a book by Henry Nouwen about the story with the same picture on the cover in a box of books donated to the church library today so that has gone into the area for people wanting to reflect further.


Mark said...

Nouwens "The Prodigal Son" is excellent...well worth a read!

Phil G said...

Thanks for your best wishes for Angelspace. I hope yours goes well too!