This November, we will be reflecting on the relationship between stone and memory. We will cover geological deep time, ancient standing stones, paperweights, gravestones, precious stones and Jesus — the cornerstone of our faith.
The First Stone is an English translation of words that came out of Jesus’ mouth when religious people where lining up to stone a woman who had sinned big time in their book. Jesus turns the tables on them and says; 'Those of you without sin cast the first stone'. In recalling this story, we are reminded that stones are used in the Bible to speak of grace and forgiveness, hope and loss, redemption and remembrance. Jounrey with us this month as we explore some of these stories.
In week one we start by thinking about the lasting nature of stone, and how it is used in scripture as a metaphor to talk about the enduring grace and love of God.
In week two we move from reflecting on the nature of God to considering how human beings have used stones as a markers in time. We raise memorials of stone to remember; people, events and follies, so that we can learn from history and pass on the common good.
In week three we think of stones as the burdens we bear and the anchors that hold us firm and the hurt we hurl at each other.
We bring our theme to a close thinking of our Christ as our cornerstone of faith. We recall how stones come in all shapes and sizes and speak to us of faith, hope and love, and our life foundation built on Jesus the cornerstone.
SEEDS TO SOW: We have a 'Seeds to Sow' phrase at the beginning of each section. These are open-ended and optional and are designed for people wanting to develop their own ideas/resources in response to the material. Perhaps if using this material as a group you could use these prompts to inspire a time of prayer, or drawing, or creative writing? They are intended to be short and sweet, simply a starting off place for you and your imagination, be encouraged to tailor/develop as suits your group.
These discussion questions adapt our monthly themes for small Connect Groups or personal Bible study. The questions are divided into 5 parts to correspond with the 5 weeks of the Daily Worship theme. They are offered as a guideline and there is no need to go through all the given questions in a single session, or in the following sequence. Feel free to pick and choose, or adapt to what interests you or your group.