This session can be used with communion. However, it can also be used independently, extracting the 'communion' parts. You'll see what I mean. The session includes talk, Bible verses, an MPEG1 video file and a Nooma series DVD by Rob Bell, on 'rhythm.' You may also want to visit Derek Prince Ministries and buy the Proclamations bookmarks from the DPM shop. The one you specifically want is the 'Proclamation of the Divine Exchange'. (Links checked 5 November 2017)
This Communion is probably going to be a little different to how many churches or youth ministries would do it. At some churches, you may need to get permission from the pastor to do communion. (or have the wine 'blessed' in Anglican traditions). On the other hand, you may just want to go ahead as appropriate.
The session can also be used in the context of the Cross, what Jesus did for us at the Cross, the power of the Cross etc.
Songs to Play
Matt Redman, "Remembrance (Communion Song)"
Hillsong, "This I Believe"
Or use other worship songs relating to the subject of Jesus, his sacrifice, his blood, heaven, our future hope etc. (That pretty much rules any and every worship song in!)
Set the seats up in the room in a semi circle, with more than one row if possible. This is just to act as an illustration later.
Show the Nooma DVD - Rhythm
Now a little bit dated (as of 2017) the Nooma series are quite thought provoking to one level. They're probably an acquired taste for many people. Others may find them slightly surreal or a bit lightweight Biblically. You will have to decide what you feel.
Nooma DVDs can still be purchased online. The Nooma DVDs are fairly short (12 minutes or so) and come well packaged (from a design point of view!) with some questions on the insert. They cost around the £10-£12 per DVD in the UK (checked November 2017).
The description for the Rhythm DVD is: 'What does it mean to have a relationship with God? What does it look like? For a lot of us it’s a hard thing to fully understand. If God is an infinite spirit with no shape or form, how can we possibly relate to that? And what about Jesus? He said he came to give everyone life in its fullest. He came to show us how to live. Maybe it’s through trusting Jesus and living the kind of life he taught us to live – a life of truth, love, justice, compassion, forgiveness, and sacrifice – that we have a relationship with God. Maybe the way we live every day, every single choice we make, determines how in tune with God we are.'
If you want to use a different DVD, or another Nooma DVD, please feel free to do so.
Go through the Nooma DVD insert discussion questions. As a leader, you must look at the questions and watch the DVD at least once, before showing it at the session. You have to be prepared, think about what Rob Bell is saying, and be ready to ask the questions in the DVD insert, or prepare your own questions.
Youtube or MPEG Video File
The video file is a picture mosaic of the face of Jesus, made up of many pictures of Jesus (taken from stills from the Passion of the Christ). What this illustrates (to music) is many things. Firstly, the multiple stills within the picture mosaic represent all of us, as the body of Christ, representing different parts of the church. It also shows that we are all in Christ, if we have accepted him as Lord of our life. Additionally, the music is a fairly simple loop which continues to build as we zoom out from the picture mosaic. Each part of the music is a different instrument and represents the fact that we all have a different part in God's overall song for his church.
Today we’re coming together to share Communion. Communion is something which Jesus commanded his disciples to take part in. In it, we remember the body and blood shed by Jesus, by eating bread and drinking a sip of wine.
After that, we’ll be having Communion. If you’d get up, come to the front and then have communion / pray with 3 or 4 people. If you’re a visitor, don’t feel right, or don’t know Jesus, feel free to sit back and reflect on your life while you listen to the band.
Ephesians 1.22 says, ‘And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be Head over everything for the Church, which is his Body.’
If you’re a Christian, you are in Christ. You’re part of God’s family.
We’ve just watched the Nooma DVD on Rhythm with Rob Bell. In this he tells us that we’re all playing a song, but are you in tune, are in tune with who God is and what he’s doing? Are we in tune with the character and characteristics of God? Truth, love, grace, mercy, justice, compassion. Are we playing that song?
Too often our lives are like an orchestra that has a warped sound. The good news is that on the Cross, Jesus made provision for our every need. On the Cross, Jesus played the perfect tune, the perfect piece of music to enable us to harmonise our lives with his life, if we choose to accept him, his tune.
Some of us can play an instrument, and play it well. The thing is, we’re off doing our own thing. We’re playing, but not with others. We need to get back in step, to realize we need God and need others.
Others of us can play an instrument but we haven’t practiced for some time. The instrument may have gone a bit rusty, a bit old, we’ve forgotten how to play, or maybe we have been too lazy or too busy away from the things of God. For us, we need to dust out the instrument, clean it up and start playing beautiful notes again.
Others still play too quietly and you can’t hear their sound. Jesus says let your light shine so that all can see, don’t hide your gifts. But others need to know not to shout and play too loudly.
Matt 23.12 - 'For whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.'
Some people can play an instrument and they may even in an orchestra or a band. Thing is, their timing isn’t right so they play or sing at the wrong moments. When this happens badly, you can easily hear it even if you're not musical. This is a bit like someone who misses opportunities. God is saying, ‘see, I have placed before you an open door that no one can shut.’ (Revelation 3.7-8). So walk through the door.
Other times, some of us are too keen to get ahead of God. The message to you is wait patiently for God. ‘Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him’ (Psalm 40.1, Romans 8.25, Hebrews 6.15). Like Elijah at the brook of Kerith Ravine, wait for God to say time to move on. 1 Kings 17.7-8, 7' Some time later the brook dried up because there had been no rain in the land. Then the word of the LORD came to him..'
Others are in time and in the orchestra but are not playing in tune. Maybe you’re a bit of a visionary or a maestro. Maybe you’re not a team player, or maybe you just need help. Someone to guide you, support and encourage you. Look around and find someone walking rightly with God. Look to Jesus as your example. Look to the Cross as the place where Jesus paid the price for you and me.
When we play together in harmony it’s like a beautiful sound. A sound of worship before God. A sound that God is pleased with. A sacrifice of praise to the one true God. Some people play the backing parts, others take the lead. Some people are panned to the left, some to the right. Some sounds come and go at different times. Others consistently play their part.
At the Cross, Jesus has provided for our every need. No matter where you are with God today, come to the Cross, to the foot of the Cross, come to Jesus and know that he loves you, wants to restore you and help you..
Read the Derek Prince Ministries Proclamation Card
If you do not have the DPM cards, you will need to read out some Bible verses. Please consider getting the whole pack for you and your young people as proclaiming God's Word aloud is very powerful. You may already do this in your church but not all churches do.
The verses you'll need to read out, or have on screen are:
- Isaiah 53.4-5
- 2 Corinthians 5.21
- Hebrews 2.9
- 2 Corinthians 8.9
- Hebrews 12.2
- Ephesians 1.5-6
- Galatians 3.13
Video for Reflection
Invite people to come for Communion
I'll try to be sensitive here as I know churches do this many different ways. At my church, we suggested people come forward in groups of 3-4 (of people they felt comfortable with) and had Communion and prayed together.
Those people that do not want Communion, or who don't know Jesus personally were told there was no pressure to have Communion, just listen to the video - or have someone play some songs from the front. People may then join in.
Invite people to search their hearts before coming to Communion. This means that we should confess our sin before God, check our hearts, ask for forgiveness and bless even our enemies. As you take Communion, receive God’s love for you and his acceptance.
Once you’ve done this, sit with God, thank him and ask him what he wants you to do in his Kingdom.