This resource is designed for use by elders and others involved in delivering pastoral care. The cards include a suggested Bible passage, some brief words of explanation and possible questions along with a prayer. They are designed to be used as prompts by the person delivering pastoral care (rather than being handed to the person receiving pastoral care to read by themselves). The language and content can be adapted in the pastoral conversation rather than necessarily reading it out word for word. The cards can be used as bookmarks in a Bible.
The eleven cards produced so far are:
- Psalm 23 – God’s presence
(For Christians needing assurance and guidance or to hold out the promise of God’s presence for people who have not come to faith)
- Psalm 121 – God watches over us
(For Christians facing difficulties or wanting to pray for loved ones facing difficulties)
- Philippians 4:4-7 – God’s peace
(For Christians with anxieties wanting to know God’s peace)
- Mark 2:1-12 – Forgiveness of sins
(For people who have not yet put their faith in Jesus for the forgiveness of their sins)
- Romans 8: 31-32 – Generous God
(For Christians to respond to God’s generous grace by being generous to others)
- Matthew 11:28-29 – An Invitation to Rest
(For people who have not yet put their faith in Jesus – and for Christians to bring their burdens to him)
- Hebrews 12:1-3 – Running the Race
(For Christians to follow Jesus more strongly – casting off any sin that hinders)
- Revelation 21:1-5 – The Ultimate Healing
(For Christians to assure them of their future hope of a new heaven and new earth)
- Ephesians 4:26-27, 31-32 – Dealing with Anger
(For Christians who struggle with anger)
- Matthew 1:18-25 – Christmas – God with us
(For Christians to encourage them that God is with them to transform them to be like Jesus)
- Luke 24:1-8 – Easter – Mission Accomplished
(For Christians to know they have a living hope because of the resurrection of Jesus)
To make these cards readily available, A4 pages with several cards per page are available to download. These can be printed double sided and then cut or guillotined (using light card is recommended). Alternatively, a PDF version designed for use on a smartphone is available to download (this requires Adobe Acrobat to be installed on the smartphone).
Further cards are planned for release at a later date.
Suggestions for use
The cards (or smartphone version) can be used in a ‘routine’ pastoral visit or when a specific pastoral concern is raised, for example, anxiety (use Philippians 4:4-7) or concern for a loved one who is far away (use Psalm 121). If time is short, the prayer alone may be a useful prompt, or share just one thought from the Bible passage and then pray.
If the person does not normally read the Bible or needs some encouragement in doing so, suggest using TIDES or other helpful devotional material. Be prepared to have a follow up conversation if questions or issues arise that cannot all be addressed in one conversation – arrange another visit or meeting for coffee for example.
For meeting more often rather than an occasional pastoral visit and for more of a discipleship focus, the Proximity resource is recommended.