For Lent, I am walking us through a book called Apprenticeship With Jesus. You can follow along by reading my highlights and reflections. Extensive previews of the book, including excerpts, can be found through Google Books and Amazon, as well as eBook purchasing options.
Day 23: Invitation To Join The Guild: Letting Go Of Self Sufficiency
– Medieval apprenticeship programs – preliminary process to citizenship in the community
– Apprenticeship is the end to a nominal approach to Christianity.
– Jesus’ followers were Rabbi school discards. They were the J.V. team.
– Becoming an apprentice requires us to allow him to live his life through us. That requires a personal cross.
In reading this book, Moon recommends a video by Rob Bell (yes, the same Rob Bell that has caused a whirlwind of controversy lately) called Covered In The Dust of the Rabbi. I found it on YouTube and it is great (see below). Despite what you think of his theology, Bell is a great communicator and this video makes the relationship between the disciples and Jesus come to life. Bell’s video is important to our discussion over this book because it details how Jesus’ disciples learned from him. We are called to learn in the same way – sacrificing everything to do the things that Jesus did so that when the times comes, we can put Jesus’ teaching into action on our own.
Apprentice Activity: Burn the Doubts and Then Give Up
– Get a notepad and 15-30 minutes
– Write down every reason you can think of for being unworthy to continue this apprenticeship program with Jesus. Tell God why you shouldn’t participate.
– After silence, ask him if he is sure you are fit for the program. Listen for a response.
– Tell God that you give up and that you want him to live his life through you.
– Read Colossians 3: 1-17 and then ponder verse 9 – Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices
Here is a sampling of the items that made my list of reasons why I should be kicked out of Jesus’ apprentice program – poor reader of scripture, easily distracted, impatient, prideful, self absorbed, frequently take the easy way out, and would rather be a contrarian than a devoted follower. Then Jesus reminded me of some of the guys that he chose to follow him. I could see myself in many of the disciples’ character. They suffered from the same drawbacks as I do. Jesus didn’t kick them out of the program.
What is Jesus teaching me? Jesus is teaching me to bring him with me wherever I go. I have viewed much of my spiritual life as prep work for my real life. I think that as long as I am doing some spiritual prep work then I will be prepared for what the day has in store for me. This is not a bad strategy but it is missing a key element. Christ does not want to be with me in only the designated times but all the time. Christ is my life not just preparation for life. All of this has taken a long time to realize but I am starting to be more conscious of asking Christ to be with me in every situation.
Do you leave Jesus behind and go live your life? or Do you bring him with you and work in communion with him throughout the day?