New from Jen Hatmaker: The 7 Experiment: Staging Your Own Mutiny Against Excess

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Spent some time with a new study from LifeWay today.  Based on her 2011 book 7: An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess,  The 7 Experiment by Jen Hatmaker is a 9 session DVD-driven study that posits a counter-cultural message: It’s not about what you own…it’s about what owns you.

Wrestling with a challenging set of topics, this is a study that will be right up the alley of groups that need to be called to a new level of activism.  Not in any way an intellectual project, The 7 Experiment is all about introspection and thoughtful self-awareness with a major twist of application.

Along with an introduction and a wrap-up session, the 7 topics are:

  • Food
  • Clothing
  • Possessions
  • Media
  • Waste
  • Spending
  • Stress

Hatmaker, along with her husband Brandon, is a co-founder of Austin New Church and a popular speaker and author.  The DVD sessions feature Jen Hatmaker along with personal stories from many of the non-profit partners of Austin New Church.  At 11 t0 16 minutes the DVD segments are pitched just right.  Short enough to grab and hold your attention; Long enough to flesh out the concept.

At 189 pages the workbook is content rich.  Designed with a Threads feel, the reading commitment will challenge group members that are looking for a show-up unprepared Bible study.  Instead, each session in the The 7 Experiment includes 15 to 20 pages of reading with the discussion questions interspersed throughout.  Can a member participate without reading the section?  Yes, but many of the questions are built on an understanding of the session content.

The upside of The 7 Experiment is that it is one of a very small number of studies that even begin to help groups wrestle with this set of topics.  The downside?  I think if there is a downside it is that there is a lot of reading.  The content is very, very good.  It flows well.  It has a very personal feel.  It guides into a much needed discussion.  There’s just a lot to read.

This is a study that will absolutely grab the imagination of certain groups.  For others, it will be a challenge for a variety of reasons.  Still, if you’re looking for a study that will help your members grapple with the stranglehold of excess, you need to take a look at The 7 Experiment.  The payoff is more than worth the investment.

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above may be “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. In addition, I am the Small Group Specialist for LifeWay. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
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  1. breakfast@tiffanys on March 6, 2013 at 8:02 pm

    Thanks for the review! I am interested in this study, but am trying to find out if I need both the book and the workbook, or if the Staging Your Own Mutiny workbook contains the text of the book itself. I cannot find any information elsewhere! Thanks!

  2. markchowell on March 7, 2013 at 10:53 am

    Hi Breakfast…errr, Tiffany? You can do the study with just the workbook. The workbook actually includes everything a member needs to get the most out of the study.