You know that Joy is taking three courses this semester for her Master of Ministry Degree. She may have also told you that we purchased over 35 books for the courses. I generally try to read all the material for her studies. I am on book number six now – THE GREAT OMISSION, RECLAIMING JESUS’S ESSENTIAL TEACHINGS ON DISCIPLESHIP by Dallas Willard. This is a good one. I recommend it. You may remember last year we were concerned about loaning things out and never getting them back. We even made a list with who borrowed what and when, and if they didn’t return the item we would not loan anything else. The culture is “if I borrow from you I will keep it till you come after it.” Well I’m just through the first four chapters of Willard’s book but on page 25 he writes “when you lend a dress, a stereo, a car, or some tools or books, are you able to release them with no hope of seeing them again, as Luke 6:35 suggests we should?” I had to read Luke 6:35. I believe that’s what it says. What a ministry. How small I feel for having a list.
Another thing that hit us hard was just on the next page. James 1:2-3 talks about welcoming as friends trials and temptations that intrude on our lives. We thought about the shopping problems we told you about earlier this week.
Discipleship is not only for super Christians. The word “Disciple” occurs 269 times in the New Testament while “Christian” is found only three times. We sometimes feel discipleship is optional, but it is not. That’s what we are supposed to do – make disciples.
We pray that you, like us, will strive to be happy in all our circumstances, and truly work to become disciples of Christ.