1. Too busy for email.
We want to help a friend overseas with a project that will change lives. We email his pastor, asking for his email address. His pastor writes back, “he is very busy by working discipleship he don’t have any time to check his email.” As much as I can argue that he should pay attention to us, he heart-deep in amazing work. And I thought, “How am I keeping busy?”
2. I was serious about emailing me.
Friday I laid out a plan to learn to answer this question: When my schedule blows up, how do I remember to talk to God? I suggested working the plan for a couple days, then emailing me to ask question that starts with, “Hi Jon. How can I remember to talk to God when ….” and then fill in your own situation. I forgot to give you my email. jnswanson at gmail dot com.
3. Getting practical
Here are the instructions to qualify for the triathlon at the 2016 Olympics. Now you can’t say that you don’t know how to qualify. But those instructions do nothing to help you qualify, to lay out the training plans, the disciplines, the funding. Having a goal is great. Having the last step of the process is great. But we need coaches who can give us specifics.
This isn’t true just of the Olympics. Talking to pastors, in particular, Dallas Willard writes, Our most serious failure today is the inability to provide effective practical guidance as to how to live the life of Jesus. The Spirit of the Disciplines, 109-110. “Be like Jesus”, while important, often isn’t as helpful as considering how “love your enemies” was lived out in Jesus’ interactions with his enemies and the amount of prayer that included. Looking for that kind of coaching will make a difference by 2016. And beyond.
Links to all my books are now at anewroutine.com.