Wednesday, February 3, 2010

The Year of Living Jesus-ly

Ed Dobson interviewed A.J.Jacobs last year. Jacobs wrote the book, The Year of Living Biblically, in which he tells about his attempts to live the Old Testament for a year. Christian pastor Dobson decided to live a year "Jesus-ly". He ate kosher, attended synagogue, observed the Sabbath, celebrated feasts and festivals, and tried to think and act like Jesus. His book is, The Year of Living Like Jesus. Some of the things he discovered: Sometimes the church's preoccupation with programs makes it harder to follow Jesus. " I was struck by how much time Jesus spent in relationships with his disciples" Dobson cancelled all programs in his church for one year - everything, that includes youth programs, Easter and Christmas programs, etc. They only had Wednesday night and Sunday services. They read the Bible, shared the faith, and invested time in relationships.

Oh yeah, they lost hundreds of members who needed the programs and found them elsewhere. But, he says, we learned the less you do, the more spiritual you become.

He says, he immersed himself in the gospels, and his church, too. He read a couple chapters from the gospels every Sunday during church, and encouraged the people to read the Sermon on the Mount every day for a month. He said he found great comfort in the fact that a third of each gospel is devoted to the passion of Christ. As an ALS (Lou Gehrig's disease) sufferer, he was encouraged to discover Jesus was a suffering Messiah.

Like Jesus he became deliberate making relationships with those outside the faith, including spending time in bars. He says, churches are so busy that Christians are insulated by their own subculture. He found people everywhere are genuinely interested in your personal journey with Jesus.

Living Jesus-ly sounds kinda radical, doesn't it?