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22 Oct 2018

Case Studies

Thoughts on case studies for discipleship and spiritual disciplines.

unsplash-logo Steve Halama

Case #1

You have recently begun discipling a new believer who is eager to grow in Christ but needs help to know where to begin and what to do. In light of the reading this month on spiritual disciplines what disciplines would be most beneficial for this new believer? And why? Please cite pertinent scripture as you develop your argument.

Set goals, direction, path know where/what you are trying to get.

2 Peter 3:18 (ESV) But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.

Sit down with a Bible, notebook and, pen. Whitney, Spiritual Disciplines, “without pen in hand or fingers on the keyboard, I can get so distracted in meditation that I begin tacking one unrelated thought to another until I’m shingling off into the fog of daydreams instead of thinking in the light of Scripture.”

Taking notes, writing down questions, thought, or things to follow-up on while reading is helpful and keeps your mind focused on scripture.

God’s Word is powerful. Through it, Creation happened, and God saved us. Jesus is God’s Word John 1:1 He also grows and teaches us through His Word, 2 Timothy 3:16-17 (ESV) All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work. And, God promises us He will give us wisdom if we ask, James 1:5 (ESV) If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.

Similar to how we get to know people around us: by spending time with them and talking to them we can better know Jesus. The Bible tells us all about Him and we can spend time with Him and ‘talk’ to Him through His Word and prayer.

Memorizing and meditating on scripture helps your prayer life come alive. Whitney, Spiritual Disciplines, “By Meditating on Scripture This is one of the most compelling concepts on prayer I’ve ever learned, and it reinforces the importance and value of meditation presented in the previous chapter. Here’s the simple, but extraordinarily powerful truth: Meditation is the missing link between Bible intake and prayer. Too often disjointed, the two should be united. Typically, we read the Bible, close it, and then try to shift gears into prayer. But many times it seems as if the gears between the two won’t mesh. In fact, after some forward progress during our time in the Word, shifting to prayer sometimes feels like suddenly slipping back into neutral or even reverse. Instead, there should be a smooth, almost unnoticeable transition between Scripture input and prayer output so that we move even closer to God in those moments. This happens when we insert the link of meditation in between.”

Journaling your journey helps tremendously. You can see where you have been, see the growth you have made, and keep on track. It also keeps you from having to try to memorize everything and helps God’s Word resonate in your heart.

Case #2

You have recently begun discipling a new believer and are attempting to help them see the importance of the spiritual disciplines for their life. In light of the reading this month what would you say to this young believer to explain the significance of the the spiritual disciplines for their life? What passages of Scripture would you point to? How have the spiritual disciplines been important for your own life, helping you grow up in Christ? Please cite pertinent scripture as you develop your argument.

It is important to start by developing good practices and habits. I started from the wrong heart motivation from a place of religious obligation and duty which quickly becomes drudgery. I didn’t look forward to spending time with God. However, once my mindset changed and my goals changed from checking things off a list to be “good” to have the desire to truly want to know Jesus more, spiritual disciplines became a delight.

It seems chasing godliness and righteousness will lead to delight and satisfaction. We chase so many other things in this life trying to achieve these results futilely.

God uses 3 catalysts to change us:

* People: Proverbs 27:17
* Circumstances: Romans 8:28
* Then there is the catalyst of spiritual disciplines. This catalyst differs from the first two
  in that when He uses the Disciplines, God works primarily from the inside out.

It is vital, to grow up in Christ, to spend time with Him by reading and thinking about scripture and talking to Him.

He will use all of our investments in practicing spiritual disciplines to know Him better: prayer, fasting, journaling, giving, mediation to form and mold us in His image.

If we authentically come to Him with the goal of godliness and a soft heart, He will grow us to become more like Himself.

Jesus set the example for us. We find Him praying in solitude, spending time with the Father multiple places in scripture, one example is in Mark 1:35 (ESV) And rising very early in the morning, while it was still dark, he departed and went out to a desolate place, and there he prayed.

We train and prepare for almost every other area of life like sports, music, work, really everything requires effort on our part to prepare to do it well, we should train in spiritual disciplines, as well. This is one area that promises the greatest reward, 1 Timothy 4:7-8 (ESV) Have nothing to do with irreverent, silly myths. Rather train yourself for godliness; for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.