One challenge of Christian living is how one may practically live out the faith on a daily basis.
With the advent of the Internet and easy/intense social connection, our lives have been crowded out and powerfully shaped. Some of these may be benign i.e following the news, interest groups, gaming, watching Korean dramas and so on. Even these, if done excessively, can be addictive and displaces constructive activities. Some can be downright destructive such as pornography, gambling and activities which leans on the darker side of life. The list, benign or otherwise, is long. Almost anyone can find one or two areas to be hooked to.
Spiritual disciplines such as praying, reading Scriptures, reading good books, strengthening friendship, having deep conversations can be quite easily crowded out. We begin to lose appetite for church worship (we can be present but not quite there) and Cell groups or Bible studies also fall on the way side. Christian "stuff" begin to get boring. We lose the joy and resent being force to participate in religious activities. We lose a sense of the presence of God. If I may use a term which is hardly used anymore, we are "backsliding."
There are no easy answers to these modern challenges. Most churches are adapting in some way or another. MPCC too will need to seek the Lord for a way to "do church" today. While one may need to innovate, in some areas, it is helpful to "excavate". We look to the past , the "classic" and see if they can be renewed to help our Christians today to find a way to express their faith on a daily basis.
This week's course on the Daily Office is one such attempt. This will be a course with practical and personal outcomes. We simply want to help Christians to grow in the habit of praying and reading the Bible daily.
The early church came up with the term "rule of life" to describe how Christians may express their faith in practical ways. Like it or not, each of us already have a "rule of life." The question is whether those daily habits are constructive or otherwise.
These daily habits are the gears of life. How we spent our days is, obviously, how we are spending our lives. These daily "rule" will ultimately shape our lives and its outcome. Unless we are intentional in shaping it, we will be shaped by our cultural environment. We may be defaulting to the "Singaporean rule of life." Unless we match our habits with our overarching purpose (i.e. to love God and our neighbour), our daily lives may be marching to the drumbeat of other purposes.
I invite you to join in for these evening session of an hour and 15 minutes over six Thursday. Let's reflect and grow some good "rules" together. We pray that by His grace, our lives can be seeded and transformed.