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0 1 0 3 F E B R UA RY 20 1 5

T H E V I N E .O RG . H K

T H E V I N E C H U RC H
WA N C H A I , H O N G KO N G

29 B U R ROW S ST R E E T

ta b l e o f c o n t e n t s

welcome
to
converse

Introduction by
Ps. Andrew Gardener........4

preparation for
what is
ahead

Introduction...................22
Suitcase action plan.....24

a break in
the music

Introduction.........................6
What does your
day look like?.......................8

prophetic
prayer

Information....................... 27

to measure
or
weigh

Introduction....................... 12
4 Ps flowchart.................. 13

pause, &
think on
that

Introduction....................... 16
The Ignatian Examen...... 17

converse
map

2/F Auditorium layout... 28

Image, cover and right:


Monarda fistulosa, var.
(Crimson Monarda) - Plate
145, 1792. Curtiss Botanical
Magazine, Volume 5. Special
Collections, National
Agricultural Library.

welcome
to converse
We are so glad you are
here today. Our prayer is
that you and your family
will enjoy an intimate and
personal time with God in
prayer and reflection.
Introduction by
Ps. Andrew Gardener

introduction

To help get the most out of


the Converse experience,
we encourage you to
read through this booklet
and use it as a guide to
assist in your connection
with God. Inside are key
ideas from some of our
recent sermons, as well
as questions to get you
thinking and space to
record what God speaks
to you. On the back of the
booklet, we have included
a reference map of the
auditorium space with
an outline of the location
of each station to help
you journey through
the experience. You will
find instructions for the
individual activities when
you arrive at the stations.

The focus of Converse this


year is selah. The concept
of selah is so important in
our life and faith, providing
rich, life-giving encounters
with God, that are often so
difficult to put into practice.
We trust that as you
walk through each prayer
station, you will encounter
God in a personal and
powerful way.
We have designed the
prayer space to enable you
to journey through the four
main meanings of the word
selaha break in the music;
to measure or to weigh;
pause, and think on that;
and preparation for what is
ahead. This booklet takes
each of these meanings
in turn and gives a bit of
background to them. We
hope this will be a great
resource to you in your
prayer journey.
Enjoy!

Please note the following guidelines to help you enjoy


this interactive prayer experience.
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.

Please turn your mobile device to silent.


Take this time to be still and quiet in Gods presence.
Feel free to worship and pray in your own language or way.
There is no need to rush or feel you must visit every station.
Please be sensitive to other worshippers and people praying.
Children are welcome, and we encourage you to participate
as a family.

May you encounter God afresh today!

If you are here with your family, look for


this symbol as you are walking through
the stationsit indicates activities that
are especially family friendly!

introduction

a b re ak in the

music

1
Introduction

The word selah is found 74


times in the Hebrew Bible,
71 times in the Psalms and
three times in Habakkuk.
Given that most times
it is used, it appears in
between two different
sections in the Psalms, and
because the Psalms were
poems that were put to
music and to song, most
scholars believe the word
is a musical notation that
essentially means a break
in the music, or to take a
pause and brief rest in
the music.
From this interpretation
of the word we can
understand the nature and
importance of rest as God
intended it. The rest that
God has planned for us is

a break in the music

not simply doing nothing,


but rather creating a space
to connect with him. This is
the kind of rest that revives
our soul.
Many of us dont like to
rest because we feel like
we dont have time, are
worried that well miss
out on things or feel guilty
when we do. However,
when we avoid rest, and
reduce its importance in
our lives, we fall out of sync
with Gods established and
ordained rhythm for our
lives. It is a break in the
music but its still a part of
the music.
Matthew 11:28-30
Genesis 1 and 2

What does the rhythm of your life sound like?

a break in the music

What d oes your day lo ok like ?

Key
=
=
=
=
=
=
=
=

a break in the music

a break in the music

Do you have a healthy understanding of the importance of rest?

10

a break in the music

Does your rest allow you to connect with God?

a break in the music

11

to me asure or

weigh

2
Introduction

The break in the music


of Psalms is placed
strategically to allow
us to measure or weigh
significant ideas written
about. Similarly, the break
in the music of our lives
allows us to evaluate the
influences on our lives, to
evaluate whether God and
our faith is shaping our
perspective louder than the
culture around us.
When we have an
understanding of the way
our thinking and beliefs
impact our actions, and
ultimately our progress,
we can see the wisdom in
Gods call for us to selah.
As our perspective informs
our priorities, which in turn
impacts our practice and
ultimately our progress,
it is essential that we

12

to measure or weigh

measure or weigh what is


shaping our perspective.
The enemy is aware of
this, and would rather our
perspective be shaped by
things other than God. His
strategy is to keep us busy
so that we never get an
opportunity to realign our
perspective to one that will
lead us to life.
If we are not resting, we
are intentionally taking
ourselves out of the Godcreated process designed
to renew our lives. It is only
possible to measure and
weigh our perspective in
a place of reflection and
prayer, inviting God to
speak into our lives.
Romans 12:2
Psalm 73

4 P s flowchart

to measure or weigh

13

What specific things distract you from connecting with God?

14

to measure or weigh

What is shaping your perspective?

to measure or weigh

15

pause , and

think on that

3
Introduction

As we begin to make space


in our lives to align our
perspective with that of
God, we can feel unsure
of how is best to approach
this, and it can be easy to
fall into patterns of false
rest. However, the Bible
and Christian history are
full of examples of people
doing selah well, from
Jesus in the garden of
Gethsemene to Ignatiuss
Prayer of Examen.
As we look at those who
have gone before us, we
can learn that in order
for God to bring a deep
transformation to our
perspective, we need to

16

pa u s e , a n d t h i n k o n t h at

release whats on our


heart honestly and allow
the light of God to shine
on our circumstances. It is
important that we focus on
the nature of God and his
word if we are to be able to
discern what his will is and
align ourselves with it.
When we allow God to
refine our perspective in
this way, we put ourselves
in a position where we are
prepared for the challenges
that we may face as we
leave the place of selah.
Matthew 26:36-46
Psalm 65:3-6

The Ignatian
E x amen

St. Ignatius of Loyola taught people to examine themselves


before God. The Examen was a way to seek and find God
in all things and to gain the freedom to let Gods will be
done on earth.
The Examen traditionally has five steps:
1.

Recall you are in the presence of God. No matter


where you are, you are a creature in the midst of
creation, and the Creator who called you forth is
concerned for you.

2.

Give thanks to God for favours received. Pause and


spend a moment looking at this days gifts. Take
stock of what you have received and given. Notice
these clues that guide living.

3.

Ask for awareness of the Holy Spirits aid. Before


you explore the mystery of the human heart, ask to
receive the Holy Spirit so that you can look upon your
actions and motives with honesty and patience. The
Spirit gives a freedom to look upon yourself without
condemnation and without complacency, and thus
be open to growth.

4.

Now examine how you are living this day. Recalling


the events of your day, explore the context of your
actions. Review the day, hour by hour, searching
for the internal events of your life. Look through the
hours to see your interaction with what was before
you. Ask what you were involved in and who you
were with, and review your hopes and hesitations.
What moved you to act the way you did?

5.

Pray words of reconciliation and resolve. Having


reviewed this day of your life, look upon yourself
with compassion and see your need for God, and try
to realize Gods manifestations of concern for you.
Express sorrow for sin, give thanks for grace, and
praise God for the times youve responded in ways
that allowed you to better see Gods life.

pa u s e , a n d t h i n k o n t h at

17

How does the environment youre in impact your understanding of God?

18

pa u s e , a n d t h i n k o n t h at

How does your renewed understanding of God impact your perspective?

pa u s e , a n d t h i n k o n t h at

19

Does your view of your identity need to be restored?

20 p a u s e , a n d t h i n k o n t h a t

Does your view of your circumstances and situations need to be restored?

pa u s e , a n d t h i n k o n t h at

21

prepar ation for

what is ahead

4
Introduction

As selah is an integral part


of the music of our lives,
it is natural that what God
speaks to us in the place of
selah will have an impact
on all that we do. As we
secure ourselves in Gods
word and character, we
put ourselves in the best
position possible to deal
with trials and struggles.
As we experience
difficulties, we can use the
encouragement and hope
that God has given us from
our time of selah to help us
respond in strength rather
than weakness. We can
begin to see Gods hope
and peace impacting our
perception of all of our
circumstances.
It is Gods peace, found in
the depths of his presence,

22 p r e p a r a t i o n f o r w h a t i s a h e a d

that prepares us for the life


that is ahead of us. This
peace is a theological and
personal reality to us
theological because it is
found in the understanding
of the work of the cross
and our salvation, and
personal because it is given
to us in abundance as we
experience the presence of
God in our lives.
The less rested you are,
the more concerned you
will be about your future.
Rest doesnt change your
circumstances, but it does
change you!
Ephesians 6:15
James 3:18
2 Thessalonians 3:16

What has God spoken to you that can anchor you in difficult times?

p r e p a r a t i o n f o r w h a t i s a h e a d 23

Suitcase
Ac tion Pl an

When you prepare for a journey, you make sure you have
packed everything you need.

24 p r e p a r a t i o n f o r w h a t i s a h e a d

p r e p a r a t i o n f o r w h a t i s a h e a d 25

How can you maintain the habit of selah beyond the month of January?

26 p r e p a r a t i o n f o r w h a t i s a h e a d

prophetic

prayer
(Sunday only)

We believe that God loves to speak into our lives today.


If you would like to receive prophetic prayer on Sunday,
there will be a team of trained men and women praying
throughout the day. They will be stationed in front of
the stage.
Please feel free to approach one of these members of our
prayer team, who would be happy to spend some time
with you in prayer.

p r o p h e t i c p r a y e r 27

pause, & think on that


prophetic prayer

a break in the music

preparation for
what is ahead

tithes & offerings

to measure or to weigh

Vine Centre 2/F Main Auditorium

entrance

exit

4/F upper house


is available as
a space of quiet
reflection

The Vine Church


29 Burrows Street
Wan Chai, Hong Kong

t: (852) 3527 6000


f: (852) 2865 5381
info@thevine.org.hk

www.thevine.org.hk
thevinehk

thevinechurch