God Slot 2

Thanks for the comments about the ‘God Slot’ it was good to read through the stories, musings and examples. I wasn’t dismissing the God Slot (I nearly wrote ‘dissing,’ then realised that I sounded a bit trying-to-be-pseudo-cool *laughing*) but wanted to throw it into discussion, it was good to have some positive stories of God Slotiness!
I guess one of the difficulties I have with the SLOT approach is when it’s communication firmly and heavily aimed AT young people without the possibility of dialogue. How ’bout some stories today about stuff that’s really allowed young people to share their thoughts and experiences …. a kind of ‘God Listening’ thing!
What and why has stuff worked? Reflections appreciated ….

7 Replies to “God Slot 2”

  1. I’ve tried to come up with some cute, funny remark or story…but instead I just vomitted it out here.
    The long and short of it is this – I’m not sure the God-Slot works as well as we think it does.
    I’m pretty sure it undermines the very things we are trying to invite someone else to try…
    Unfortunately – I’m an american. Which means I’m great at pointing at the problem, affixing blame to said problem, then throwing money/programs to fix it. none of which is extremely helpful…still chewing…he he.

  2. Is there a specific aspect of the God Slot which you think is failing/needs changing, Grant, or would you scrap it altogether for something else?
    A more dialogue-based approach does have its advantages, but also comes with disadvantages – not applicable in groups much larger than about 6 people, YPs to shy/”cool” to participate, risks the quieter ones getting lost under the loud ones…
    The one-way “speech” format is one which YPs are familiar with from lessons in school – is that a good thing or a bad thing?!

  3. Great questions, nick and like you said – every approach is going to have wins and drawbacks.
    Specifically what bothers me most about the God-slot is that it FEELS like “bait and switch.” Which is not very authentic, doesn’t really capture the essence of Jesus, and at times can undermine our own integrity. (“Show up for a great game/pizza/smoke/light show/concert but in order to get out of the door – we are going to tell you how to get saved.”)
    With smaller groups – you are right, larger than 6, we are going to need another leader/mentor/ around. But in that size, the shy ones can’t really hide. The relationship should draw them out.
    Which means that as YP we are going to have to expand our skillset to include how to reproduce a spiritual leader who can reproduce a spiritual leader.
    So, it’s not that the ‘one-way’ format is bad. I’d say it is just incomplete.

  4. one more thing — shameless plug, here.
    I rambled about this on my blog yesterday…so if you want to free up some of Ian’s bandwidth, come on over and we can continue the discussion there!! hahaha..
    love you, ian…

  5. Feel like I could write for hours about this….how to paraphrase….ummmm?!! Considering this 1st….’The one-way “speech” format is one which YPs are familiar with from lessons in school – is that a good thing or a bad thing?!’ I would say it’s a very bad thing. Research suggests that less than 10% of information ‘told’ to people at school is retained in any meaningful way. From my own research, the influence of R.E. is largely negative because the info that’s, ‘told’ ends up being patchy and Christianity rejected on that basis. I could go on but I think that there are many reasons why the ‘God slot’ is a very bad thing…..issues of info retention, relationship structure, power imbalances, force feeding, not connecting with where people are at, Grant’s points etc etc!!! If the ‘God slot’ is retained then at the very least, there must be structured opportunity for the listener to engage with the information presented….i.e. discussion groups.
    To consider something written in the original blog….’guess I’d rather a ‘God Slot’ than groups that just have an ethereal hope that something of their Christianity (however vague) will make some lasting impression’….is the ‘God Slot’ itself not just a method that is used in the hope that it will make a lasting impression? It seems that in our current culture it makes a largely negative impression i.e. not only do most yp not remain just the same, they actually end up with a more negative attitude to Christianity.
    So what else do you do?!! 1st off, read Simos comments!!!! (January 9, 2006 02:03 PM) Basically, be with and question young people all the time and in so doing you will be creating the space for them to reflect on themselves (e.g. why do you swear? Who do you think God is? What do you think Jesus is? Where do you come from? Where are you going?). Listen because you’re interested… and mean it! Listen because you care. Help and encourage each young person to connect the different bits of their lives and in so doing you will be allowing them to open up their own God bit. Every person thinks about God, death and the purpose of their life. By encouraging and allowing young people to reflect, they will think about God with you and on their own. Young people need you, not a sermon/talk FROM you.
    Could say much more…..but that already sounds like an advert to go to war (“YOUR country needs you!!”)

  6. Feel like I could write for hours about this….how to paraphrase….ummmm?!! Considering this 1st….’The one-way “speech” format is one which YPs are familiar with from lessons in school – is that a good thing or a bad thing?!’ I would say it’s a very bad thing. Research suggests that less than 10% of information ‘told’ to people at school is retained in any meaningful way. From my own research, the influence of R.E. is largely negative because the info that’s, ‘told’ ends up being patchy and Christianity rejected on that basis. I could go on but I think that there are many reasons why the ‘God slot’ is a very bad thing…..issues of info retention, relationship structure, power imbalances, force feeding, not connecting with where people are at, Grant’s points etc etc!!! If the ‘God slot’ is retained then at the very least, there must be structured opportunity for the listener to engage with the information presented….i.e. discussion groups.
    To consider something written in the original blog….’guess I’d rather a ‘God Slot’ than groups that just have an ethereal hope that something of their Christianity (however vague) will make some lasting impression’….is the ‘God Slot’ itself not just a method that is used in the hope that it will make a lasting impression? It seems that in our current culture it makes a largely negative impression i.e. not only do most yp not remain just the same, they actually end up with a more negative attitude to Christianity.
    So what else do you do?!! 1st off, read Simos comments!!!! (January 9, 2006 02:03 PM) Basically, be with and question young people all the time and in so doing you will be creating the space for them to reflect on themselves (e.g. why do you swear? Who do you think God is? What do you think Jesus is? Where do you come from? Where are you going?). Listen because you’re interested… and mean it! Listen because you care. Help and encourage each young person to connect the different bits of their lives and in so doing you will be allowing them to open up their own God bit. Every person thinks about God, death and the purpose of their life. By encouraging and allowing young people to reflect, they will think about God with you and on their own. Young people need you, not a sermon/talk FROM you.
    Could say much more…..but that already sounds like an advert to go to war (“YOUR country needs you!!”)

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