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Learning from a Martial Arts Camp

Posted by on Feb 7, 2011 in discipleship | 6 comments

Learning from a Martial Arts Camp

Last weekend, my son Jeremy participated in a martial arts camp. Jeremy is a 2nd degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do, and he’s just started learning one of the forms of karate.

I noticed something last weekend. During the camp, the instructors talked about the forms and movements, showed the students how to do the forms and movements (and even explained why), then helped the students do the forms and movements. Often, the students would even help one another.

On the drive back home, I kept comparing this martial arts camp to several Christian conferences that I’ve attended. At all of those conferences, people talked about stuff, but that’s where it ended. This is not disciple making.

I’m tired of just talking about stuff; I’m ready to show people how to live for Christ and then help them live for Christ and then live for Christ together.

I’ll probably never have my name added to a conference speaking list, but that’s okay. I’ll be making disciples instead.


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  1. 2-8-2011

    If the purpose is “knowing about,” then talking (and sitting and listening, even taking notes) will do fine. If the purpose is doing, well, then you have to get out on the floor and break a sweat…

  2. 2-8-2011

    Okay Alan, Here is your chance. I am opening my home starting this week for Bible study, prayer, singing, talking, eating, whatever is needed.

    I kind of hope it is free flowing, and kind of a “do-what-is-needed” type gathering. My concern is that it may not have much direction and people will not stay interested.

    Do you have any advice?

  3. 2-8-2011

    Oh.., and like your post says;

    “I’m tired of just talking about stuff; I’m ready to show people how to live for Christ and then help them live for Christ and then live for Christ together.”

    I’m also in need to “be” shown how to live for Christ by these people.

  4. 2-8-2011


    So… what is the purpose?


    I’ll offer a couple of pieces of advice, and hopefully others will as well. You can take this or leave:

    1) Don’t make it about keeping people interested.
    2) When you meet together this first time (and maybe for a few times) talk about expectations openly and honestly.
    3) Don’t think of the singing, praying, Bible study as the “meeting” while the other part (eating, talking, whatever) is not.
    4) As soon as possible – perhaps even this first time – come up with something you can all do together to serve others.
    5) Talk or get together with each other (lunch, dinner, coffee, movie, whatever) during the week.
    6) All of this (above) assumes that Jesus Christ is focus of everything that you do (you can’t control that about others, although you can encourage it).

    One more thing… if you can, write about this on your blog. I’ll be glad to link to it. Perhaps you’ll get even more (and better) advice.


  5. 2-8-2011

    Alan, you asked, “Art, So… what is the purpose?”

    To be conformed to His image.

    I believe this happens bit by bit as we follow Him (doing), and in following Him, we come to know Him (not merely “about Him”). Following Him will bring us into contact with other followers, and into contact with the lost.

    “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.”

    For me, the classic line describing this “action bringing His leading” comes from a servant:

    Gen 24:27 “…I being in the way, the LORD led me…”

  6. 2-8-2011


    This is part of the passage in Colossians that I’m currently studying: “He [Christ] is the one we proclaim, admonishing and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone fully mature in Christ. To this end I strenuously contend with all the energy Christ so powerfully works in me.” (Colossians 1:28-29)

    I think Paul wrote this as his example to the Colossians. Thus, this should be their goal as well. Sounds very similar to what you just said.



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