What’s the most beautiful art you’ve ever seen? What made it so special?
Summary: Soularium is a deck of 50 photographs you can use to have great conversations about the experiences, life’s desires and spiritual attitudes of others. Participants choose images that represent the questions they’ve been asked. These conversations can lead to great opportunities to share the story of how you came to know Jesus. Some call this story your “testimony”. We’ll refer to it here as your “faith story.”
Watch Soularium: Getting Started to learn how to get started.
How do you know when you’re genuinely listening to another person?
The creators of Soularium said: “It’s not about getting to a certain destination, it’s about finding connections in your story that can lead to deeper dialogue.” How would thinking this way shape how you use Soularium?
If you’ve used Soularium before, how have you have been more focused on arriving at a specific “destination” rather than on genuinely listening? How could that change?
Role Play: Go through Soularium in pairs in your group. Answer the five questions with your partner and listen carefully as they share their answers. Write down the sample way to “Introduce Soularium” found in the printed Soularium instruction cards. Rewrite it, if needed, to reflect how you talk, and practice saying it aloud.
Watch Soularium: Going Deeper.
What do you think is the biggest challenge in continuing the conversation and transitioning to deeper spiritual conversations after going through the Soularium questions?
“Prayer, listening, and preparation are key ingredients to taking a conversation deeper.” Which of these do you find the most challenging?
Write down the suggested sample transition questions found in the printed Soularium instruction. Which one do you want to memorize and try?
One of the most important preparation steps for using Soularium is choosing images to tell the story of your journey to faith in Christ. There are additional instructions at the end of this lesson to guide you through this process.
Plan: Pick a date by which you agree to have completed your faith story. Then set aside time to prepare your faith stories and schedule a time to meet back together to practice with one another.
Role Play: Take turns using your “Continuing the Conversation” transition questions and sharing your faith story using the images you’ve chosen. Is there any helpful feedback you can give one another?
Watch CruPress Presents: Your Personal Testimony about how to share your faith story.
Imagine that you’ve just heard someone share about their own life using the Soularium images. They’ve probably even selected an image that represents their spiritual life or journey. Now, if they give you permission, it will be your turn to share images for your spiritual journey. You’ll want to be well-prepared so that when you share your images and your story, you communicate in a way that is honest, clear, and natural.
The “Before, How, & After” outline can be used to communicate your faith story with or without the Soularium images. The more you tell your story, the more confident you will become in sharing it, and the more prepared you will be for the many people and opportunities God brings your way.
Choose an image which best represents your experiences and emotions prior to becoming a follower of Jesus, or prior to giving control of your life to Jesus, or the struggle you currently face when you don’t surrender to Him.
Some examples might be:
The weathered barn door. It may represent seeking protection from hurt or pain.
The guy standing in the subway. It could represent feelings of loneliness or isolation.
The older couple walking hand-in-hand. It might represent a longing for lasting relationships.
The silverware drawer. It could represent the need to be in control.
The man with post-it notes on his head. It may represent anxiety or overwhelmedness.
Once you’ve selected a photo, jot down some words or phrases about what the image represents and why. If you can recall a specific event or experience which unpacks this image further, even better.
Select an image which represents how you first understood the Gospel, or the Lordship of Christ, or the need to surrender to Him daily. You’ll want a photo that captures a change in perspective or a new understanding.
The close-up of the eye. It might represent understanding God’s grace for the first time.
The spider. It may represent the experience of being trapped in sin and needing forgiveness.
The broken-down bicycle. Possibly you understood your brokenness and need for a Savior.
After selecting your photo, write down some notes about what the image represents and why. Seek to briefly express your understanding of sin and the need for forgiveness. Communicate that a relationship with God is a gift of grace and cannot be earned by a good life nor good behavior.
Choose an image that represents the difference Jesus has made in your life.
Some examples might be:
The girl with the balloons. Possibly this represents the freedom and joy of knowing God.
The parents with their son. This may represent becoming part of God’s family.
The sunset. It could represent the peace that comes from being forgiven and having eternal life.
Be sure to communicate the changes which have occurred, but be realistic as well. You’re still human, and there are still struggles and problems. But you have a new destiny, purpose and hope that you didn’t have previously.
Be prepared after sharing your story to ask two further questions:
“Has anyone ever talked with you about the kind of relationship with God I’ve described?”
“Is this something that you’d like to learn more about?”
If they give you permission, take the time to explain how they can begin a relationship with Jesus.
Here are some additional helpful hints as you choose your images and write your story:
Write the way you speak. Remember, you’re having a conversation, not giving a presentation.
Don’t criticize or name any organization, church, or denomination.
Keep it under three minutes.
Don’t use Christian jargon such as “saved,” “born again,” “converted,” etc.
Practice it until it becomes natural.
Don’t preach or press for a decision. Just share what Jesus has done in your life.
Discuss: What part of your faith story will be the most difficult to communicate? What part will be easiest?
Pray: In light of what we’ve discussed, how can we pray for each other right now?
Since we last met, what happened as a result of expressing Christ’s love to others?
How can you, or we, have spiritual conversations with others using Soularium this week?
With whom will you/we initiate?
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