Experiential Storytelling: (Re) Discovering Narrative to Communicate God’s Message – by Mark Miller

Miller asks a new question:

 

How do we meet and intersect with our youth and their experiences? In a world that questions facts, and where new experiences are needed in order to keep our youth engaged, there needs to be a shift in teaching styles.

 

This book provides any leader with every step that is needed to make a change. Everything from teaching outlines, how to provide an experiential setting for learning, and how to engage every thinking and learning style after the narrative is read is included and can be used for life application.

 

Miller suggests that experiences, which are interactive and relational, should be the basis for ministry as it will engage and educate. Even with all of this, there is something more. This type of ministry places trust in the learner so that they can wrestle with the narrative and derive meaning that speaks to their experiences. This is the beauty in teaching from a story foundation. It allows for teaching to become more missional – it allows teachers to teach like missionaries do. By engaging their culture, speaking their language, and becoming apart of their community, personal experiences are enabled and there is a greater emotional attachment to Jesus’ story.

 

He asks a very poignant question:

 

“Do we trust our people and the Holy Spirit enough to allow them to think for themselves?”

 

From a jr. high standpoint, are we willing to allow experiences to begin and form without seeing the fruit of our work? Are we willing to allow the high school, or young adult ministry to be the final stages in personal decision to follow and live like Jesus?

 

Experiential Storytelling is just that – creating experience from sharing our story and, more importantly, God’s story with those around us. This book is a must-own for any leader that wants to teach from a “storying”  perspective as it will provide guidance, application, and insight into this wonderful form of communicating.

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