Spiritual Disciplines Class Outline

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  Cross-Shaped Spiritual Formation  A course in the spiritual disciplinesDoug Floyd Objectives  Drawing from the Bible and church history this class explores the lived reality of Christian faithas commanded in Mark 12:29-31  Jesus answered him, “The first of all the commandments is: ‘Hear, O Israel, the LORDour God, the LORD is one 30 And you shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength’ This is the first commandment 31 And the second, like it, is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as your- self’ There is no other commandment greater than these”   Mark 12:29-31   Requirements  Participants are expected to attend classes, participate in class exercises, and keep a journal For those taking the course for credit, a paper examining a particular aspect of spiritual formationwill be required (see me for details) Suggested Text  The Celebration of the Disciplines by Richard Foster will provide a grounding text for thecourse Additionally, we’ll discuss a variety of texts that explore various aspects of spiritualformation including articles that will be circulated to each person and various optional books Class Outline  In six classes, we’ll explore the implications of loving God (heart, soul, mind and strength) andloving our neighbor as ourselves1The Call of God2Waiting on God3Responding to God4Listening to the People of God5Offering a Living Sacrifice6Long Obedience Class Descriptions  While following a basic structure, each class will be adapted to the needs of participants A sum-mary of class notes will be provided at the beginning of each class1 The Call of God“ Those whom He called, He also justified; and those whom He justified, He also glorified”  Calling and conversion are one and the same work of the Holy Spirit, transforming a sinner intoa lover Spiritual discipline is simply the obedience to follow this Caller wherever He leadsThe call of God might be understood as a call to live in four directions:ForwardBackward Cross Shaped Spiritual Formation, Doug Floyd     InwardOutwardThe Holy Spirit is integrating our whole person in these four directions through the love of Godin Christ2 Waiting on God (Forward)“  Humble yourself under the mighty hand of God”  God calls us into the future through the inspiration of His Holy Spirit How do we make room tolisten and wait before the Lord? The disciplines of listening include:Silence/BreathingSolitudeFastingMeditation (God’s Word, Creation)WorshipRetreatSabbath3 Responding to God (Inward)“ Seek Him while He may be found”  As God reveals Himself, we humble ourselves under the mighty hand of God in prayer Some of the disciplines include various forms of prayer as modeled in the Psalms:RepentanceLamentationAdorationContemplationImprecationIntercessionBreath prayers4 Listening to the People of God (Backward)“  Forsake not the assembling of yourselves together”  God calls us out into a body of believers This gives rise to disciplines within the context of other human relationships These disciplines train our memory to reflect on the story of God workingin the midst of His people Disciplines include:Fellowship/Assembling with other believersCultivating soul friendsConfessionBaptism and CommunionLearning and remembering the history of God’s people5 Offering a Living Sacrifice (Outward)“  Present yourself as a living sacrifice unto the Lord”   Cross Shaped Spiritual Formation, Doug Floyd     Our faith takes outward expression in service to God and God’s people (Romans 12) Disciplinesinclude:ServingGivingSharing (burdens)Proclaiming6 Long Obedience“ They shall still bear fruit in old age”  Eugene Peterson speaks of our faith as a long obedience in the same direction From the pilgrimPsalms to the peregrini, we see the model of faith as an extended pilgrimage The challenge of the disciplines is not to grow weary in well doing (like those fallen in the wilderness) In the finalclass, we will discuss what a lifelong dedication to the spiritual discipline looks like Cross Shaped Spiritual Formation, Doug Floyd