Sunday, April 20, 2014

Bible Study Review: Restless by Jennie Allen

Y'all - I am so blessed to share with you today a review of the newest Bible study from Jennie Allen. It's called Restless and it came out earlier this year. It is such a fantastic study and I hope that my Monday night Bible study group might pick it for a study in the future because I think everyone can benefit from it.

The Restless study is the same format as the Chase study by Jennie Allen which I reviewed last year. The set comes with a DVD, a study guide, a leader guide and a set of discussion cards. There are eight sessions to the study and each session begins with a DVD session that lasts between 20 and 25 minutes. Each session deals with a different aspect of feeling restless in our lives. The eight sessions are: Restless, God's Story, Gifts, Suffering, Place, People, Passions, Mystery.

I love the DVD sessions. I feel like they are real and I think we learn the most and can relate the best to something that is real. I think a lot of time in church and Bible study people try to sugar coat things and pretend everything is perfect. Instead, we should be able to share with one another the messiness of life and not be judged because we are keeping it real.

The study guide is extremely thought provoking and uses a lot of scripture, which I like. The questions are geared towards opening up discussion in a group but they also allow the reader to take a deep look at what's underneath. These are not what I would call surface questions or a surface discussion. Again, it is very real and provokes real discussion and I just feel like this study is a great tool to help you get to know the people in your study group on a deeper level which will enable us to help each other through the circumstances of life.

The discussion cards are also great. There are 105 cards, 12-13 cards for each session and are designed for use with the DVD. They are designed for each person in the group to randomly grab a card and then feel comfortable enough to discuss the question on the card with the group. I love cards like this because each answer is different and personal and again, helps you get to know the people in your study group.

The leader guide is a great tool as well, helping the leader better prepare for leading a group. There are extra questions and prompts for discussion, but if your group is like mine, then prompts are probably not needed. Still, it's a great tool for preparing to lead the group for the study.

Restless is a really great Bible study. One of the questions in the summary on the study book describes it best, "What would happen if God got bigger than your fear and insecurity, and you spent the rest of your life running after his purposes for you?" This study will help you towards your goal of feeling secure and comfortable about your Christianity and  your place in God's kingdom. If you feel restless and are looking for a way to help overcome it, this study is for you and I would encourage you to try it.

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