How To Be A Modern Monk
Practicing the Ways of Jesus In A Modern World
The past few years have made it seem like our world has lost its way. Our culture is like a tree without roots, a house without a foundation, or a boat without a rudder. We desire stability, transformation, direction, and a healthy personality. We desire to live full, overflowing lives. Let’s go on a journey and discover some ancient practices that can produce change from the inside out.
In our modern world, we have removed many ancient practices that build robust human beings. Is there a better way to live? Is there a practice that could lead us to wholeness? When we begin to think about monks, we may imagine shaved heads, robes behind cloistered walls, and individuals living their monk life, out of sync with our modern-day lives and practices. How can their practice affect our lives?
The word monastery, or monk, comes from the word mono, which means singular. Meaning, we have one focus and a singular purpose: “One thing I have desired of the Lord, that will I seek: That I may dwell in the house of the Lord All the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to inquire in His temple.” PSALM 27:4
How can we, with our relationships, jobs, cellular technology, and twenty-four hours a day seven days a week news cycles become cloistered? We're not going to become modern monks to become isolated and escape the world, but to become reshaped and recreated so that we can begin to help change the world. This is what being a modern monk is about: finding the rhythms of grace in the practices of Jesus in our modern world.
God will bless the advancements of our world, yet if these advances replace ancient eternal practices, they will be void of their power to shape and build people and culture. Simply put, what God blesses as a supplement he will not bless as a substitute. A modern monk who practices the ways of Jesus in a modern world will experience an out-of-this-world life, meaning we will have miraculous quality throughout the seasons of our lives. The monastic approach to living is a daily guide to miracles. The monastic heart and mind produce divine intervention. Our world needs divine influence and eternal practices to guide us to the safe harbor of robust living.
1. Modern Monk - THE MIRACLE OF THE MONASTERY
Practicing the ways of Jesus in a modern world infuses our lives with the rhythms of grace. The practices of Jesus become a daily guide to miracles in the student’s life. We will be miraculously transformed, become a little lower than the angels, and our lives will be filled with God's glory, might, and honor.
2. Modern Monk - PRESENCE
Spiritual formation is not a random exercise but one that involves discernment and discipline of recognizing and practicing the personally felt presence of God that is life-changing. There is no believer, leader, or monk without the presence of God and without the believer, there is no presence. The student will learn how to practice STATIO, the moments between the moments.
3. Modern Monk - PRACTICE OF PRAYER
EM Bounds said, “To Live Well We Must Pray Well.” The student will begin to meet God and people in a new way in the place of prayer. Prayer is the glue that holds us together and the power that brings about transformation.
4. Modern Monk - PRACTICE OF SPIRITUAL READING
We will discover the ancient art of spiritual reading through the practice of LECTIO, MEDITATIO, ORATIO, AND CONTEMPLATIO. Spiritual reading will develop within the student deep confidence in Jesus and boldness to follow His ways daily.
5. Modern Monk - SILENCE, STILLNESS, SOLITUDE AND DIVINE GUIDANCE
We live in an overstimulated, over-busy, and over-noisy world. The student will learn silence, stillness, and solitude for the purpose of developing a discernment to hear God in our everyday lives and to receive divine guidance, where faith is born and miracles happen.
6. Modern Monk - PRACTICE OF FAITH
The student will learn the more excellent way of faith. We will become unaware of our faith and be more conscious of Jesus to see obstacles removed and heaven invade our lives.
7. Modern Monk - PRACTICE OF OBEDIENCE
The student will learn to obey God completely with the realization that there are others on the other side of our obedience. A monk's life of faith is simple: we hear, and we obey. The student will develop a trust that we do not have to understand fully to obey completely.
8. Modern Monk - PRACTICE OF FASTING
We will learn Jesus and Paul’s approach to fasting, which energizes our prayers and infuses our lives with the supernatural.
9. Modern Monk - PRACTICE OF SACRIFICE AND GENEROSITY
The student will learn about their contribution to the world, church, and people that truly expresses the heart of Jesus. A monk's response to the reckless generosity of Jesus is sacrifice and generosity, which makes our world larger and larger.
10. Modern Monk - PRACTICE OF COMMUNITY
A modern monk is not about isolation but about a common heart, community, and family. We will learn how to do life together and how to consistently surrender to the unity of the faith which is key to the supernatural and transformation within us and our world.
11. Modern Monk - PRACTICE OF LIVING IN THE WORLD
The student will learn how to practice hospitality and become a friend of sinners that they may come to believe.