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A Disciple's Heart Daily Workbook: Growing in Love and Grace

A Disciple's Heart Daily Workbook: Growing in Love and Grace

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A Disciple's Heart Daily Workbook: Growing in Love and Grace

194 Seiten
3 Stunden
Feb 3, 2015


Discipleship in the Methodist tradition affirms that there is always more work for God to do in the human heart. A Disciple's Heart attempts to reclaim and, in a sense, reinterpret for today John Wesley’s understanding of this transformation of the heart, which he called “Christian perfection,” with the goal of equipping participants to continue to grow into the likeness of God’s love in Christ.

Designed to be used in a small group and, if desired, a congregation-wide emphasis, the Daily Workbook fosters personal spiritual growth as group members develop their own pattern of daily Scripture reading, prayer, and personal reflection (five readings per week). Participants are invited to journal in response to guided questions, define their own next steps, and then share with others in their small group as they learn and grow together in community.
Feb 3, 2015

Über den Autor

Justin LaRosa is a United Methodist Deacon and a licensed clinical social worker. He has served Hyde Park United Methodist Church in Tampa since 2005, first as the Minister of Discipleship and now as the Director/Minister of The Portico, a community gathering space where people come together for conversation, connection, and community change. Justin has co-authored three studies for Abingdon Press: A Disciple’s Path: A Guide for United Methodists; A Disciple’s Heart: Growing in Love and Grace; and Sent: Delivering the Gift of Hope at Christmas. He and his wife Caroline have a daughter, Isabella, and a son, Russell.

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A Disciple's Heart Daily Workbook - Justin LaRosa




In A Disciple’s Path we defined a disciple as a follower of Jesus Christ whose life is centering on loving God and loving others.¹ The continuing present tense indicates that discipleship is an ongoing process of continued growth through which we are becoming more and more clearly centered in our commitment to Christ. Having made that directional decision, the question becomes Where do we go from here? In other words, what is the direction or goal or end toward which the journey of discipleship is taking us?

Thy nature, gracious Lord, impart,
Come quickly from above;
Write thy new name upon my heart,
Thy new, best name of Love.


—Charles Wesley

Benjamin Ingham was searching for that sense of direction early one morning when he made his way through Oxford to John Wesley’s apartment at Lincoln College in the spring of 1734. Ingham was drawn to Wesley out of an unrelenting desire for a holy life. He was looking for practical ways to develop a richer, deeper, more faithful life as a follower of Jesus Christ. Under Wesley’s guidance, Ingham was drawn into a small group with a few other students who met weekly to encourage each other’s faith, to hold each other accountable to their spiritual disciplines, and to serve the needs of the poor.

Ingham’s journal models the defining elements of discipleship in the Wesleyan tradition.

• It begins as a response to a gnawing, soul-level hunger for a closer relationship with God.

• It involves a personal commitment to become a more faithful follower of Jesus Christ.

• It is formed by specific spiritual and personal disciplines through which the Spirit of God can be at work to continually form us into the likeness of Christ.

• It is lived in community with other disciples who encourage our growth and hold us accountable to our spiritual disciplines.

• It moves us into the world in loving service to others, particularly to people in need.

This week we will discover how the disciplines that enabled the spiritual growth of the early Methodists at Oxford can become practical tools by which the love of God revealed in Jesus transforms our hearts into the likeness of Christ.



Scripture Readings

Read John 1:35-42 and Mark 1:16-20.

Today’s Message

Everyone who goes fishing has his or her own fishing story. I remember meeting my son-in-law’s ninety-something-year-old grandmother, who lived her entire life along the river in the low country of South Carolina. She was a tiny little woman who grabbed my hand with a stronger grip than I expected and showed no intention of letting go. I said, I hear you like to fish. She looked me straight in the eye and said, Yep. And I think I hooked a big one this time. It was her way of welcoming me into the family.

All four Gospel writers—Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John—tell the story of Jesus and the fishermen. But like most fishing stories, each one has his own way of telling it.

In Mark’s Gospel, Jesus finds Simon and Andrew casting their nets into the sea because, after all, they were fishermen (Mark 1:16). What else would you expect them to be doing? Fishermen defined who they were. Casting their nets was their profession. It described what they did to make a living. It was the ordinary pattern of their ordinary lives. Jesus shows up as an unexpected intrusion into their ordinary, net-casting, fish-catching lives. But it turns out that Jesus is the fisherman casting the net this time. He offers them an extraordinary invitation that would change the direction of their lives.

Come, follow me, he said, and I’ll show you how to fish for people. It was an offer they couldn’t refuse. For reasons they probably could never explain, Right away, they left their nets and followed him (Mark 1:17-18). Jesus hooked two other fishermen named James and John the same

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