Galatians 6:2 – “Bear one another’s burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ.” Jude 21-23 – “keep yourselves in the love of God, looking forward to the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to eternal life. 22 And have mercy on some, who are doubting; 23 save others, snatching them out of the fire; and on some have mercy with fear, hating even the garment polluted by the flesh.”
Methodism was birthed out of John Wesley’s ministry. Wesley recognized that new believers in Christ needed encouragement in key practices (methods) that would help them mature into Christlikeness.
Christianity has never been, and will never be, an isolated, private faith. Christ revealed God’s triune fellowship in whose image and likeness we have been made. We are to have time alone in fellowship with the triune God, that is to overflow into fellowship with brothers and sisters in Christ for sharpening and encouragement.
When we talk about ‘discipline’ in a field of study or sport, our primary connotation is not that of punishment but of a positive commitment to an ordered, structured way of life that bears reward. In the church of Jesus Christ, we are called to support each other through positive disciplines that include accountability.
Are you inviting accountability into your life? Are you looking outside of yourself to be able to help and encourage others in their faith? There are heavy consequences to an undisciplined life and God has created the church to be a place of regular gathering to find sojourners to hold each other up to the finish line.
Heavenly Father, my Lord Jesus Christ, I pray your love would fill my heart in such a way that I would look forward to disciplining my schedule around times of fellowship with believers. Holy Spirit, use me to relieve the burdens of others and refresh their faith. In Jesus’ name, Amen.