In this week’s assembly, Mr. Meints opened by asking the students to reflect on a few things. Are they interested in deepening their relationship with God? Do they want to get more out of their devotions? Are they able to be open and vulnerable with their friends about personal things?
To address these questions, Mr. Meints shared some of his own journey of growth and faith. A big part of that journey has been his involvement in Stepping Stones Bible Camp. While there, he found a place where he spent a lot of time in prayer, Bible reading, singing without feeling awkward, open vulnerability with other Christians, and good clean fun. In short, he found a picture of what deep, meaningful, authentic, fun Christian living could look like.
People may find inspiration like this in a variety of different places and activities, but the general idea is that we all need to be disciplined in our Christian walk. Here are 8 disciplines to focus on that help us grow in our walk with God:
Pray a lot, for yourself and for others. Be real with God.
Set aside time to explore God’s Word. Dig deep; read it often.
Put your heart into singing- at school, church, assemblies, etc. Put worship music into your playlists!
Have meaningful conversations. Spend time with others doing God-glorifying things.
Find someone to share your struggles with. Be the person someone else comes to for accountability.
Rest/quiet time with God:
Put the phone away. Go for a walk. Meditate and pray.
Marvel at creation:
Wonder at the mountains. Stare up at the stars. Be in awe of the Creator.
Have wholesome fun. Tell clean jokes. Laugh, dance, and party to the glory of God!
Now, this is not an ‘8 step guide to being a good Christian.’ Yes, these are things we should do, but it is important to do them with the right motivation. It’s not about a checklist, or easing feelings of guilt, or making your parents and teachers happy. It has to be about thankfulness. You have a Father who loves you so much he sacrificed his only son for you. You have a brother, Jesus, who died a horrifying death on a cross because he loves you, and a risen Lord who is coming back for you. You have the Spirit of God, living in you, working in you, giving you all that you need for eternal life. Let that motivate you!
1. Which of these disciplines in your personal or family life are strong? Which are weak? Strategize as to what you can do as an individual or family to grow in an area of weakness.
2. What practical things get in the way of practicing these disciplines regularly? Brainstorm some ideas to minimize or eliminate things that get in the way.
3. Are there limitations to vulnerability? If there are limitations, what are they? Is there a danger in being too safe - not being vulnerable? What can we do to balance 'safety' and 'vulnerability' wisely?