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The current installment of the COEC began meeting in 2007.

We are currently on a "break," for no particular reason, and many little reasons - mostly pertaining to life circumstances. If anyone is interested in calling a meeting, feel free to post on the blog, join the google group (see link below) and send an email, or contact either Nancy (nancykj10@yahoo.com) or Jesse (schroeder.jesse@gmail.com) for more information.

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10.27.2008

Sharing devotional methods


First off, let me say I really enjoyed our Celebration yesterday. One thing that kept coming up is that some of us (myself included) feel a need to have a greater devotional life. I know some of you have passed some stuff around, and I thought maybe we could list some of them here to help people. In the words of Thomas Kempis, from The Imitation of Christ, "Not everyone can have the same devotion. One exactly suits this person, another that." So, let's share some ideas and help each other find practices that will work well for each of us.

Please comment and post some successful devotional practices you have done in your life that might benefit other people.

10 comments:

Greg Lyons said...

Nick,

Could you clarify for me what you mean by "devotion" and "devotional life?"

Greg

Nick Johnson said...

Good question Greg. I guess I was mainly thinking about personal daily/weekly religious practices. So, things like I read Luke every morning, and every evening I pray the rosary and read a chapter out of devotional book X...or something like that.

Does that clarify?

Zack said...

This is something I struggle with also Nick. I have a devotional book/prayer book called For All The Saints that I used almost daily when I was in Australia and it was very good. Each day starts with a prayer and 4 readings. 3 different passages, usually one OT story, one gospel and one something else. and then one reading from a church father or famous theologian or something about one of the passages and then a closing prayer. It really helped me to have structure, but I found it was a little long. Especially back in America, in Australia I had set aside a large chunk of the morning where there was nothing else to do so it was good. In addition to that I think I've also benifited from prayer walk/runs or praying in the shower. I can focus a lot better if I'm doing something then just trying to sit still and pray. Again though it is hard to get in the habit of doing those things.

I'm not a very disciplined person in general, I struggle doing simple things that I want to do like eat breakfast or brush my teeth three times a day. So I'd like to hear if anyway has any thoughts on something for the undisciplined sporadic person or do I just need to become disciplined?

NancyJ said...

I enjoyed the Celebration on Sunday as well and was reminded how a reading from the ancient church resonates with me. I really liked the chant aspect of the Lord’s prayer. It is interesting how symbols and/or repetition have a way of connecting me to God that I would not have anticipated. For example, I hope to enjoy more opportunities of understanding the history of the Rosary and incorporate that into my life.

I actually try to begin each morning on my knees with the Lord’s prayer. I ask God to give me my daily bread for that day and offer Him myself—daily bread for His use.

I am embarrassed to admit that I don’t study the Bible as often as I used to. To be honest, I didn’t realize that accepting the Bible as less than inerrant would have an unforeseen consequence. (It is both freeing and difficult to read the Bible with that perspective.) And yet I know the Holy Spirit is quite capable of bringing fresh truth and insights to my mind and heart. So as I write this post, I want to again challenge myself to study Scripture more often.

Since I’ve been coming to the Emergent group, I look forward with anticipation to meeting with everyone each week and am disappointed when I can’t attend. I’m excited to be a part. So when thinking of devotion, perhaps there is a way to look forward to it and be excited about it as well. We each will have unique ways that connect us to God. I personally hope to stretch to longer periods of meditation, but acknowledge that my willingness to start the day on my knees is a good thing.

From Zach’s post…”So I'd like to hear if anyone has any thoughts on something for the undisciplined sporadic person or do I just need to become disciplined.”

Maybe the best thing is to celebrate the part of you that is undisciplined and sporadic (that’s me too so I can say that) and then stretch a bit to something unfamiliar but fresh! Perhaps devotion will then take on more frequency and more consistency. This is my own challenge as well.

Kara Newby said...

Jesse may have already mentioned this, but we have also been talking about starting to do daily prayers (I think we decided on a common text,that is on the web, but I can't remember the link) and then possibly once or twice a week reading them over skype or ichat- so 1) it becomes communal as well as personal, and 2) there is a little accountability to keep it going. We keep meaning to start, but haven't yet, so maybe by posting this we will get on the ball. Of course we invite anyone who is interested to join us.

Nick Johnson said...

Kara (or Jesse) - I remember you guys talking about that. Not meaning to derail the conversation, but can either of you say just a bit about skype or ichat. I just worry about availability to everyone who wants to take part - for example, I might be interested but I run a pc, so I am assuming ichat is a no go.

Adam Newby said...

We use iChat via our AOL accounts. We can talk to anyone that has an AOL account. PC or Mac, doesn't matter.

Nick Johnson said...

sweet, I did not know that.

Kara Newby said...

and skype can be downloaded by anyone- www.skype.com - the reason we were considering these is because they include an option for video, which we thought would be nice. Iam not 100 percent sure how many ppl could be included in a video chat (via skype) but I've been told that many can.

Zack said...

we tried with live.yahoo.com yesterday and there was a pretty big delay.oovoo might work or palbee is another flash based one that might have less delay.