Discipleship is more than a method to finding salvation—it’s the tuning of our hearts and minds to God’s movement around us and to the Holy Spirit’s call to follow Jesus in every part of our lives.
Methodism as Practical Faith
As the brothers John and Charles Wesley (the founders of the Methodist movement) sought to experience God in their lives, they discovered something that should have been obvious all along—that following in the footsteps of Christ brings us closer to understanding God’s heart. With three or four other friends, the brothers committed themselves to personal and group study of scripture, daily prayer, and discipleship that included holding one another accountable through a set of questions that forced each person to consider how real Christ was to them each day.
To the people around them, this seemed like a crazy way to live. But as more and more people began to discover these “methods,” a revival broke out around them that became a movement that changed the world.
Wesley’s 22 Questions – A Simple Tool for Reflection
In 1729, while John Wesley was a student at Oxford, he started a club with his brother Charles. It was soon mockingly dubbed “The Holy Club” by some of his classmates. The club members rigorously self-examined themselves everyday by asking the following 22 questions.
While not an official Methodist tool, the 22 questions are still used by people looking to challenge their own ideas of who God is to them and how they live into the calling Christ has given them.
- Am I consciously or unconsciously creating the impression that I am better than I really am? In other words, am I a hypocrite?
- Am I honest in all my acts and words, or do I exaggerate?
- Do I confidentially pass on to others what has been said to me in confidence?
- Can I be trusted?
- Am I a slave to dress, friends, work or habits?
- Am I self-conscious, self-pitying, or self-justifying?
- Did the Bible live in me today?
- Do I give the Bible time to speak to me every day?
- Am I enjoying prayer?
- When did I last speak to someone else of my faith?
- Do I pray about the money I spend?
- Do I get to bed on time and get up on time?
- Do I disobey God in anything?
- Do I insist upon doing something about which my conscience is uneasy?
- Am I defeated in any part of my life?
- Am I jealous, impure, critical, irritable, touchy or distrustful?
- How do I spend my spare time?
- Am I proud?
- Do I thank God that I am not as other people, especially as the Pharisees who despised the publican?
- Is there anyone whom I fear, dislike, disown, criticize, hold a resentment toward or disregard? If so, what am I doing about it?
- Do I grumble or complain constantly?
- Is Christ real to me?