December 8th, 2008. That’s when I fell off the wagon apparently. That’s when I stopped blogging. I had nothing to say. I didn’t want to commit the time necessary to produce anything worth anybody’s time (if it wasn’t worth my time why would it be worth yours?).
March 5th, 2012. I’m back on the wagon. It took me a while to find a purpose to blog. It may be a selfish reason, but I need it to be in the public domain for a certain level of accountability. Being a seminary student and currently studying Methodist History and Doctrine one of the things I found most intriguing about the character of John Wesley was his strict devotion to journaling. He kept constant record of, not only his daily activities, but also of his theological positions by constantly writing about them.
One of the most intriguing is Wesley’s distinction of the marks of a true Christian. At one point in his life this requires concrete assurance even in the face of certain death that one is loved by Christ and saved from wrath. After a startling experience aboard a ship that nearly capsizes Wesley does not see it fit to call himself a Christian. What is even more interesting is to read his own commentary of his journals from the years.
1740: I who went to America to convert others, was never myself converted to God” (1775–”I am not sure of this”); “[I lack] faith in Christ” (1775–”I had even then the faith of a servant, though not that of a son”); “I am ‘a child of wrath.'” (1775–”I believe not”); “I was persuaded that…I was even then [1728-29] in a state of salvation” (1775–”And I believe I was”); “I had been all this time building on the sand” (1775–”Not so: I was right, as far as I went”).
– Heitzenrater Wesley and the People Called Methodists, p.261-2
Immediate reflection yields one conclusion, but looking back over his life’s journey with the wisdom experience brings he is able to see where he was being led in his theology.
As an aspiring pastor.father.husband I need something where I can reflect on thoughts and experiences over the days.weeks.years. This is my spiritual discipline (well…one of them). It’s a commitment that requires temporal budgeting as well as serious thought and attentiveness to my life. I will say things that are wrong. I will say things that I will look back on and shake my head. But most importantly I will be honest to myself about what I say.
Do you track your beliefs/experiences over the years? How do you track your thoughts/beliefs over time? Do you have a way of keeping yourself disciplined to this?
This is me restarting this journey.