March 29 – Where we go from here

Today we’ll look at a possible next step: the covenant discipleship group. A covenant discipleship group is simply a group of people who gather regularly to challenge and support each other in developing habits of Christian discipleship.

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March 22: Faith in community

This week we’re looking at faith in community: Being the church.

Faith in community

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March 15: Let it shine

Today we’ll look at the outward disciplines – the “doing good” of Wesley’s general rules.

Let it shine

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March 8: From the inside out

We have some control over the world we live in – to some extent, we can change our surroundings, and to a greater extent, move to new ones. Much more so, though, we can change what happens inside us – and this is where the most significant changes can occur.

From the inside out

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March 1: God’s strategy

In today’s class, we’ll look at some of the scriptural models for mutual support, but also start looking at the Bible itself, and how to approach becoming more acquainted with a work that most of us profess is really important – but may not really be sure why or how.

For the beginnings of thoughts on the class, go to the God’s strategy page.

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Feb. 22: It’s in our DNA

For the first session, Feb. 22, we’ll look historically at why accountable discipleship is particularly connected to Methodism – and briefly at what it involves.

For notes on the class, click here

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Disciplines: Tools for the journey

Coming soon: Each of these studies other than the first one will have suggested reading material to prepare for the class – look for that to be posted early in each week. As we go along, there will also be links or suggestions for further study – we’ll touch on a lot of things briefly in class, then you’re encouraged to look more deeply at those that interest you. (Scroll down for a schedule for the series)


We enter the season of Lent with great intentions. We want to prepare our minds to celebrate the resurrection of Christ. We want to prepare our hearts to experience that resurrection anew. That kind of preparation is more effective if we use the right tools.

Through more than 20 centuries, the Christian church has developed a whole toolbox of methods to help people deepen their relationship with God through Jesus Christ.

For most all of us, this toolbox includes prayer, worship, Bible study and service. Other find benefit from other tools: fasting, meditation, journaling, confession, and more.

Our own branch of the Christian family was born when a group of people gathered to challenge and support one another in using tools like these. Their methodical ways led them to be called Methodists—and the name stuck.

Today’s sermon introduces a six-week study to help you learn to use your faith-building tools more effectively, and possibly get introduced to some you aren’t yet familiar with.

Covenant Discipleship

At the end of the study, we’ll ask for a small group of volunteers to pilot a kind of small group that’s new to St. Mark’s: the Covenant Discipleship Group.

In a Covenant Discipleship Group, the members decide together which spiritual tools they want to learn how to use, and covenant to meet weekly to inquire into each group member’s progress, successes and challenges.

The six-week study can be beneficial whether or not you choose to be part of the Covenant Discipleship group—but it just may be the next step you need to take in your faith journey.

Schedule

Sunday sermon, Feb. 22

Disciplines: Tools for the journey

Galatians 5:13-18

Each Sunday Feb. 22-March 29 there will be a study at 4 p.m. in the Conference Room.

Feb. 22: It’s in our DNA

Methodism was born as people came together to support and challenge one another to be more faithful. That approach still works.

March 1: God’s strategy

From the time God decided Adam should not be alone, people supporting one another in the life of faith has been a recurring theme in scripture

March 8: From the inside out

New Testament teaching, from words of Jesus to the expansive letters of Paul, have stressed inner change as the core of discipline. There are time-tested tools to help that change happen

March 15: Let it shine

A personal relationship with God is the foundation—but not the end. There are also tools we can use in deliberately living a more Christlike life.

March 22: Faith in community

When people gather together to support one another in their faith journey, there’s a word for that: Church. Learn how to get more out of worship and church activities you already do.

March 29: Where we go from here

We’ve learned some good ways to stay more disciplined and focused on Christ. How do we keep it up?

 

 

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