Friday, February 10, 2012

Open Invitation to the Wesley Experiment

The Servant Council has decided to meet only once a month for church business, but we are also going to meet once a week for spiritual disciplines. Every Wednesday night at 7pm, we will meet at Brenda Pitonyak's house to continue the Wesley Experiment. Everyone is invited to join us. There is no beginning or end to the Wesley Experiment; it will be an ongoing event, so please join us when you can. Members of the servant council will not be able to make all of them, either. This is a lifestyle that we undertook in the fall of 2010, and we all grew closer because of it. We want to try to regain that closeness.

The big question that everyone has at this point is what exactly is the WesleyExperiment? What does it entail? Here it is in a nutshell, compiled from all the literature we have. Note that this may seem overwhelming, and you can follow as little or as much of these disciplines as God leads you or you can handle, but the more we accomplish, the closer to God and our neighbor we become.

By God’s help, I will not deviate from these 5 disciplines:

i. Meet once each week to pray together (this is the Wednesday meeting at Brenda's house).

ii. Give two hours time each week to God (self-surrender) which may include working on a project specifically assigned (teaching, visitation, preparation for worship—altar guild, music, bulletins, giving witness, an area assigned at “boot camp”, etc.); and/or leading someone into a relationship with Christ by sharing the Word and prayer, and inviting and bringing them to share Christian fellowship.

iii. Give God one tenth of my earnings (self-denial). Putting God first requires that, like the discipline of starting each day with God, I first give my best and surrender to God a tithe as the Word directs me… Hebrews 7; 13:8; Matt 23:23; Luke 11:42; Matt 5:19

iv. Spend 5:30-6:00 or ½ hour before my morning usually begins each morning in prayer and meditation (self-control) (The half hour is divided up below).

Let each of my prayers petition God for:
a. A sense of divine direction for my life
b. An understanding of the need of total surrender to His will
c. Strength of mind for the development of self-discipline

v. Witness for God my experience to others and…
a. Be aware of my witness and of my need of God as I pray the Lord’s Prayer daily every morning
b. Recommit to the 10 Commandments and call the attention of others to them
c. Offer a thanksgiving before every meal.
d. At my bedside (kneeling if possible) ask forgiveness, be thankful for God’s mercy and grace, remember family, friends and strangers; offer prayers before getting in bed and getting my rest

The half hour in part iv above can be divided as follows:
First 10 Minutes: after reading carefully, pray and meditate on the assigned scripture for the day (see below). Write out in less than 50 words how this passage applies to your life.

Second 10 Minutes: Write out one totally unselfish and unexpected act of kindness or generosity that you will do today. Name the person—then act during the day, vigorously and with love and compassion. Keep a written record of the reaction of the person and the effect of this act upon you personally.

Third 10 Minutes—Write out carefully how you would like to build and develop your life. Go into detail; take your time. Be thoughtful and prayerful. One well prayed out thought or sentence per day would be excellent progress.

And now, the current scripture schedule:

As our chief aim is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever, the theme this month has to do with our calling and gifts along the Way.

February 1 - Romans 12:1
February 2 - I Corinthians 1: 26-29
February 3 - Ephesians 4: 7-8
February 4 - Psalm 90: 17
February 5 - Romans 11: 29
February 6 - Proverbs 18: 16
February 7 - Proverbs 29: 28
February 8 - Romans 12: 3-5
February 9 - Philemon 6
February 10 - I Corinthians 2: 11-12
February 11 - John 4: 10
February 12 - II Timothy 1: 7
February 13 - II Timothy 1: 14
February 14 - I Corinthians 13
February 15 - I Corinthians 12: 4-11
February 16 - James 1: 17
February 17 - James 1: 22-25
February 18 - Hebrews 13: 20-21
February 19 - I Corinthians 7: 21-24
February 20 - 2 Corinthians 4: 7
February 21 - 2 Corinthians 9: 8
February 22 - Psalm 89: 1-2
February 23 - Deuteronomy 14: 2
February 24 - Psalm 138: 1-3
February 25 - Isaiah 60: 1
February 26 - Ezekiel 34: 11-16
February 27 - Matthew 7: 21
February 28 - Ecclesiastes 3: 9-14
February 29 - Revelation 22: 12-13

Call me at 207-4050 if you need directions to Brenda's house. The open invitation to the Wesley Experiment starts immediately.