A tool for keeping God at the centre of everything
For the journey of Walking with God, we encourage everyone to use the wisdom and practice of making an intentional ‘Rule of Life’ as a proven tool to grow closer to Jesus, become more like him and join in with his mission across the world.
The concept has been used for centuries with rule meaning a ‘regular pattern’ rather than a set of regulations and restrictions to be obeyed. Like putting on the right pair of glasses to see clearly; a Rule of Life acts as a tool to help see God’s purpose, direction and balance for our lives.
We all have regular rhythms and habits, whether conscious or unconscious. The question is are they are serving us well? Are we spiritually and emotionally healthy? Do we have a clear sense of direction and purpose without being blown off-course by the busyness and distractions of life? Do we cope well with sudden events and circumstances? Do we keep focused on God?
“A RULE OF LIFE IS AN INTENTIONAL, CONSCIOUS PLAN TO KEEP GOD AT THE CENTRE OF EVERYTHING” (PETER SCAZZERO, AUTHOR OF EMOTIONALLY HEALTHY SPIRITUALITY)
Although there are various ways to develop an intentional Rule of Life, many find principles shared in the 6th century by St Benedict a helpful foundation. Benedict wanted to help monks seek Christ together in community and live out God’s love in the ordinary circumstances of daily life. The stress is on a balance of healthy habits for prayer and scripture, rest, relationships, work and service.
Using these four headings, we simply encourage people to choose and explore different Healthy Habits and rhythms to match up with different life circumstances, personalities and needs. This means there can be massive variety in what each person’s rule looks like’. However, the foundation for every Christian will be seven core practices which we see modelled throughout the Bible and in particular in the life of Jesus:
- Scripture – reading, studying and soaking in the word of God
- Silence and Solitude – intentional times of quiet with God
- Prayer – conversation with God weaved into the fabric of our lives
- Fasting – abstaining from food and other items for periods to focus attention on our relationship with God
- Simplicity – freeing ourselves from distractions, unhealthy commitments and dependencies
- Community – committing time and energy to share life as part of the Body of Christ
- Sabbath – usually at least a day a week set aside for rest and worship
Wisdom from down the ages
- Start simply and be flexible
- Include fun…and get help from others to keep your rule
- Experiment and build up over time
Rule of Life Worksheet