I mentioned earlier that we're trying something new with our young adults this year. We're reading and teaching through the entire New Testament during 2008. I hope it will help us accomplish something significant as far as each young adult's personal growth is concerned, but am also trying to use it as a tool to help in leadership development.
Every other Sunday, a group of us meets immediately following the church service to discuss the fruits of our study. We stay two weeks ahead of the other young adults, and discuss how we can teach each passage well. We talk about whether or not a theme emerges in the section of Scripture we're studying, and how we can best teach that theme. Through those discussions, we're building Bible Study tools and teaching tools, while helping each teacher study for his lesson. It's unbelievably exciting to see these guys' work, and to process lessons as a team.
Last week, as a result of that meeting, we talked about the dangers of "Cardiomalopthaly" from Mark 5-9. We made up the word from medical lingo, which literally means "a heart causing blindness."
As we looked through the passage, we saw that cardiomalopthaly was something the disciples struggled with a lot. Read the 4 chapters and count how many times they're worried about bread. In chapter 6 Jesus feeds 5000 people with 5 loaves of bread. In chapter 7, Jesus heals a woman who talks a lot about people missing Jesus, but uses "bread" as a picture. By chapter 8 the disciples are worried about where they'll be able to find bread again. In 8:6-10, Jesus feeds 4000 people. But by verse 14, the disciples are worried about where they're going to find bread again.
Finally, in verses 17-18, Jesus calls them on the lunacy of the whole deal, and asks them: "Are your hearts hardened? Do you have eyes but fail to see?" They had cardiomalopthaly - a hard heart that caused their eyes to miss what God was doing in front of them. And we struggle with it too.
Good stuff out of our teaching team. I think this is going to be a great year.