The Community Rhythms of Hoboken Grace – October 2021
One of the most difficult and yet beautiful steps in our maturity as disciples of Christ is the embracing of our disabilities. The scriptures are incredibly clear that it’s in our weakness that His strength is displayed and yet we continue to act as if this journey is about our strength instead of His.
He calls us to embrace our weakness. He calls us to live in light of our disabilities.
The following book is designed to help us address two of the most destructive of our disabilities; our forgetfulness and our blindness.
Our forgetfulness robs us of living in light of His grace, His provision, His love, and His presence. We have the capacity to walk out of an incredible experience with Him and in a moment to believe the lie that He is distant. We need to develop rhythms in our lives and day that call us to remember the reality that we live and move and breathe in Him.
Rhythms also help us address our blindness because they draw us into a conversation with Him that does not cease. Rather than simply speaking to him once a day or once a week, we intentionally schedule times throughout our day to reignite our conversation with Him if by chance it has ceased. We seek to live our lives listening. We seek to live our lives attune to the voice that awakens us to the truth of God. We seek to pray without ceasing as we engage Him throughout our day rather than wasting our conversation by talking to ourselves.
Throughout history those who have known God well, those who have walked with Him, have lived lives with rhythms that called them back frequently to the one they loved most. We seek to do the same. We hope you’ll join us.
Each month we choose one passage on which to meditate for the month. We read this passage every day at a scheduled time and ask God to help us understand it better by allowing it to sift through the lives we lead. Our return to it over and over keeps the truth fresh in our minds as we experience the world around us and allows it to come alive. We seek to listen as the Spirit uses it to enlighten our experience of the journey with Christ. Throughout this month we will be meditating on:
If I could speak all the languages of earth and of angels, but didn’t love others, I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. If I had the gift of prophecy, and if I understood all of God’s secret plans and possessed all knowledge, and if I had such faith that I could move mountains, but didn’t love others, I would be nothing. If I gave everything I have to the poor and even sacrificed my body, I could boast about it; but if I didn’t love others, I would have gained nothing.
Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.
Prophecy and speaking in unknown languages and special knowledge will become useless. But love will last forever! Now our knowledge is partial and incomplete, and even the gift of prophecy reveals only part of the whole picture! But when the time of perfection comes, these partial things will become useless.
When I was a child, I spoke and thought and reasoned as a child. But when I grew up, I put away childish things. Now we see things imperfectly, like puzzling reflections in a mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity. All that I know now is partial and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely, just as God now knows me completely.
Three things will last forever—faith, hope, and love—and the greatest of these is love. 1 Corinthians 13:1–13
Each month as we meditate on truth, we come to God with questions for Him to speak into during our month. We can learn truth intellectually, but we need the Spirit to speak truth into our hearts for us to awaken to it. Bring the following questions to God. Wait for Him to answer throughout your month. Allow the Spirit to do what only He can do.
Father, where am I lacking love?
Where am I continuing to think and speak as a child?
Which of these would you have me focus on today?
Does not demand its own way
Is not Irritable
Keeps No Record of Wrongs
Does Not Rejoice in Injustice
Never Loses Faith
In memorizing God’s word, we allow the Spirit to bring truth into our lives at any moment as He calls us back to a passage at just the right time in just the right situation.
This month our memory verse is:
If I had the gift of prophecy, and if I understood all of God’s secret plans and possessed all knowledge, and if I had such faith that I could move mountains, but didn’t love others, I would be nothing.
1 Corinthians 13:2
Monday – Friends who don’t know Christ
Tuesday – Family
Wednesday – Church
Thursday – Dinner Group
Friday – City and nation
Saturday – World
Sunday – Co-workers
Monthly Book: “Intimacy with the Almighty” – Swindoll
Developing healthy rhythms in your life is about finding a schedule that works for you. It’s about figuring out how to incorporate all that we’ve talked about into your daily, weekly, and monthly experience. It’s about prioritizing and consistently pursuing the one who loves you most. To help in establishing these rhythms, we also created a way to set-up daily reminders through the Hoboken Grace App. Once you download and open the app, just go to the top left hand corner, then settings, notifications and click to turn on rhythms. You will be sent reminders in the morning, at lunch and right before the end of the work day. Many of us follow the daily rhythm schedule below, but feel free to adjust it based on your daily flow and expectations.
End of Work Day:
The Lord’s Supper is another rhythm of remembrance and a rhythm we can experience in community. Each month in your dinner group you’ll walk through our monthly communion practice that ties into our meditation passage for that month as well as our memory verse. The leader will walk you through the following questions.
As you begin communion this month, read through our meditation passage together. (See above.)
Leader: When you look to the person on your right, how has God fearfully and wonderfully made them?
(Hand out the bread and cup.)
Read the meditation passage again.
Leader: “As we take the bread, we remember the one who gave His body for ours to be restored.”
(Take the bread.)
Leader: “As we take the cup we remember the price that was paid for us to live the purpose for which we were created.”
(Take the cup.)
Spend time in prayer thanking Him for bringing you into this story and specifically creating you for the role he planned for you.
This month we will be fasting on Thursday, July 15th.
We will be abstaining from any food and will drink only water from the moment we wake until sunset.
Moving through your fast allow your hunger to remind you of the incredible complexity of God’s creation. He created you in such a way as to ensure that you remained nourished. He created you with senses that would alert you to the needs of your health.
Allow it to remind you as well that He doesn’t say we’re generally created, but specifically created. You may wonder at times about the way you were created, but God never does. You were perfectly created for the role He intends for you to play in the incredible story He is telling.
Challenge yourself to embrace that truth.
As you get away with Him, read through the meditation passage.
Spend the day pursuing God’s plan for your life.
Ask Him to show you the uniqueness of His creation and how He wants to use you inside His plan. Submit to it. Give Him complete freedom to speak into your life.
What is the role you were specifically created for? Wait on His answer.