Half-Baked Thoughts on a Monday
I'm currently reading Alan Hirsch's The Forgotten Ways. Really challenging stuff that is making me think. Here's one thing that is really stretching me: "If discipleship has to do primarily with becoming like Jesus, then it cannot be achieved by the mere transfer of information outside of the context of ordinary lived life...I simply do not believe we can continue to try and think our way into a new way of acting, but rather, we need to act our way into new ways of thinking."
In the Hebrew mindset, there was no difference between knowing and doing. We have a tendency in the West to try to teach people intellectually into right ways of acting. I do think there is a time and place for that and some have an intellectual discipleship wiring. But I've found that I've learned more about prayer in getting ready for a missions trip than in sitting in a small group filling in blanks in a workbook on prayer. I've learned more about community in a cast working on a production than in a small group trying to artificially do life together. I've learned more about the Bible when trying to put it into a format understandable to children than in going through a systematic inductive course.
One chapter later, Hirsch said, "Start with mission, and it is likely the church will be found." I often try to get our small groups involved in "service," but I wonder if I should turn that on its head. Start with mission and then allow group life to form out of that. I wonder if we would be more likely to act our way into becoming a disciple.