“How is it with your soul?” was a question asked at early Methodist class meetings. In 2017 we might rephrase the question a bit and ask. “How are you experiencing God in your life today and this week?” Either way, the phrasing of the question is less important than the motivation for asking the question. The motive for asking the question in the first place is for spiritual transformation, not simply Biblical information.
Please understand that there is absolutely nothing wrong with Biblical information. We need Biblically literate Christian Disciples to be sure. Successful completion of Disciple I Bible study covers 70% of the scriptures in 34 weeks. However, we must not simply stop at Biblical literacy. We must move beyond what the meaning of the Biblical text is for today; too how does God’s story interact with our human predicament in life transforming ways?
United Methodist Christians are fairly private with our Christian faith. We like to keep things at the superficial level. We are afraid of being authentic and transparent with our congregations. Have you thought before about what might happen in your life and local church if you took a risk and formed a Wesley class meeting? The only requirement for admission to such a group is a desire to grow closer to Jesus Christ and one another. At a Wesley Class Meeting, the sole question asked by the facilitator of such a group is the one posed earlier in this article, “How are you experiencing God in your life today and this week?”
I just finished reading Kevin Watson’s book on the Methodist class meeting. Not only does he talk about the origin and history of the class meeting; but he also gives a step by step process in organizing and carrying one out to it’s fruition. I highly commend this book to you.
We are beginning the season of Lent. There is no greater time to move deeper in our Christian faith than now. Why not take a chance? Why not risk giving up control and allowing the Holy Spirit to breathe new life into your congregation and community? You might find yourself transformed in the process.
Have a Joyful and Meaningful Lent!