Earlier this month I took part in the Lifestyle module from the Discipleship Menu, put on by the Diocese of Peterborough. The menu runs a number of courses throughout the year (last year I did ‘sharing your story’) and is intended as a Discipleship MOT, rather than an intensive study group. Although I do quite like going deeper into the scripture and I’m very excited to start the living faith course after Easter which promises to be theologically stimulating.
The Lifestyle module was really interesting, mainly because of the other members of the group; all of whom were at different stages of their faith journey. However, it was encouraging to discover that we all shared the same struggles with living out our faith and how to be Christians outside the Sunday service. In particular how our lifestyle and choices reflect our faith, or in same cases, our choices don’t reflect our faith and perhaps we all need to look at what we do more carefully if we are truly to class ourselves as followers of Christ. From where we shop, what we eat to how we treat those who disagree with us.
Moreover, we looked at how the disciples struggled to be followers of Christ, and how in fact they were quite an odd group – by no means perfect, they often got things wrong but Jesus was patient with them (as he is with us) and used their gifts to form the early church.
Just like the disciples we all have gifts, and we are God’s gift to the world. These gifts come in different forms; natural gifts, spiritual gifts and passions, but all can be used to further the building of God’s kingdom here on Earth.
Have a look at the pyramid, in one way or another we are all called to be these three parts – to be a disciple of Christ, to minister to his flock and to be human while doing it. You could argue that the middle layer of discipleship is the most important because we see true humanity through discipleship and we cannot minister without being faithful disciples.
In the next part of the Lifestyle module we will look at the example that Jesus set and how that should direct our discipleship, and how best to evangelise to others (particularly non Christians). In meantime though remember that there is no divide between the secular and the sacred; we all have gifts to use for God’s glory – everyday not just on a Sunday morning.
Your light is the only light I need
as I travel through life’s mystery.
Your word the only voice I hear,
that still small voice that leads me
to the place where I should be.
Your presence is the only company I need,
as I walk this narrow road.
Your fellowship the warmth I crave
to help me on my way.