discipleship

You might hate journalling but do you track your Kairos?

One of the things that is sometimes recommended as a spiritual practice that helps with spiritual growth is journalling – the writing down of your thoughts, questions, prayers, even conversations, with God. The process can help with clarifying issues and it can be a very rich experience to go back and read a record of your interactions with God.

Generally speaking, I think there are two sorts of people – those who love journalling, and those who just can’t get into it and if they start, can’t maintain it beyond a few days/weeks. So if you have never tried it – why not have a go and see which sort of person you are.

BUT

Whichever sort of person you are – Jesus still disciples you through the same process he used with the first disciples. He brings God moments (Kairos) where there is an opportunity for the Kingdom of God to break into your life in a fresh way. The key then is to recognize what God is saying to you and change your thinking (repentance) so you can then make a plan and act differently (belief) – see Mark 1:14-15.

AND

We only really change when we follow through on what God has said and what we have planned to do in response. So each of us needs to find a way to track the Kairos in our lives that works for us. Then we are most likely to gain full benefit from those Kairos.

Is it:

  • journalling
  • keeping a list in the front of your bible (one phrase or sentence description – not a full journal entry)
  • writing them on the back of your hand
  • using some app on your smart phone (3dm has a great one)
  • post-it notes next to your bed
  • talking about them with a trusted Christian friend
  • some other brilliant idea

There is no one right way, there are just ways that work for you. So if you already have a way to track Kairos – keep using it. If you don’t currently have a way – try a few different options and see which works for you.

Why the Missional Movement will fail

Here is a thought provoking blog from Mike Breen from a couple of years ago:

http://mikebreen.wordpress.com/2011/09/12/why-the-missional-movement-will-fail/

Dinner Time Discipleship

One ofthe features of the Gospels are the times Jesus engages with people, both close disciples and others around meals. As we seek to follow and imitate Jesus, it might be good for us to have a go at the same thing. Afterall, imitation involves following Jesus’ habits not just his words.

Now I am not talking about converting your evening meal into a mini Sunday service or a bible study or leaving no room for talk about football or the latest clothing sale.  I would like to suggest some simple practices that are light weight but can lead to rich outcomes.

While you are eating just ask people (adults and kids) to share some highlights and lowlights from the day or week.  This can lead naturally and easily into brief prayers of thanks and intercession.

Ask if there is anyone they know who is going through a hard time – it can lead to prayer and a discussion about how you could help.

Ask people to share what struck them at a recent service, kids church, youth event or what stood out when reading the bible recently.

Now you don’t need to ask all of these at one meal – just one of them and use a different questions at different meals.

If you have some non Christians with you the first two questions are easily accessible to them and you can do the prayer in a way that they don’t feel they have to participate eg have one adult pray a short and simple prayer.  Including the prayer is often a place at which we can baulk and hang back.  But with a brief explanation, this is can be a wayof letting them see the faith part of our lives in a gentle, simple way.