In my sermon yesterday I referenced John Wesley’s ministry and Methodism’s unique connection to Christian friendship. Wesley thoroughly believed that we need one another for support and encouragement. God uses other people for our own edification. Friendship is a part of sanctification, or God making us more like Christ. To put it simply, to be a Christian means you need some sort of community of faith.
Another unique part of Methodism’s past was the “Holy Club” lead by Wesley during his early ministry. He would meet together with other Christian friends and they would examine one another’s hearts and spiritual walk. They also studied the bible, visited the poor and imprisoned, and even taught reading to orphans.
Here are the 22 questions the club members would go through. Some of the language might sound kind of dated, but I think there is an overarching truth to these themes–definitely applicable for our lives today! Perhaps as you discuss your faith with family and friends, some of these questions can guide your conversations:
1. Am I consciously or unconsciously creating the impression that I am better than I really am? In other words, am I a hypocrite?
2. Am I honest in all my acts and words, or do I exaggerate?
3. Do I confidentially pass on to others what has been said to me in confidence?
4. Can I be trusted?
5. Am I a slave to dress, friends, work or habits?
6. Am I self-conscious, self-pitying, or self-justifying?
7. Did the Bible live in me today?
8. Do I give the Bible time to speak to me every day?
9. Am I enjoying prayer?
10. When did I last speak to someone else of my faith?
11. Do I pray about the money I spend?
12. Do I get to bed on time and get up on time?
13. Do I disobey God in anything?
14. Do I insist upon doing something about which my conscience is uneasy?
15. Am I defeated in any part of my life?
16. Am I jealous, impure, critical, irritable, touchy or distrustful?
17. How do I spend my spare time?
18. Am I proud?
19. Do I thank God that I am not as other people, especially as the Pharisees who despised the publican?
20. Is there anyone whom I fear, dislike, disown, criticize, hold a resentment toward or disregard? If so, what am I doing about it?
21. Do I grumble or complain constantly?
22. Is Christ real to me?