Thursday, August 21, 2014

Put Your Wingsuit On

It was about a month before I started applying to schools. I was at my church and I found myself locked onto a statement in the weekly bulletin. The author was Martin Luther. For a reason beyond my understanding I couldn't pull my attention away from it. I eventually tore it out and took it with me, tucking it in my car and periodically reading it.

Fast forward a few months. I'd gone through the interview process for Bethel School of Supernatural Ministry and had just received a letter from the school informing me that I would not be attending their school this year, but after much prayer and consideration they had forwarded my application to a sister school of theirs, Bethel School of Supernatural Discipleship.

At first, I was disappointed. "What is this God?" I asked. "I thought Bethel Redding was where I was going? I thought I was heading into the ministry field, hence the School of Ministry?"
Obviously though, as He so often does, God had a better plan then mine. I had lost sight of that for a moment. But the Holy Spirit in His characteristic kindness reminded me that He knew what He was doing.

Like a child tugging on your sleeve to get your attention, I heard the Holy Spirit say, "Do you remember that statement in the church bulletin I had you pull out?" He asked. "Yea, what about it?" I replied. "Go read it again."

This is what it said.

"Become a Disciple First"

"In holy and divine matters one must first hear rather than see, first believe rather than understand, first be grasped rather than grasp, first be captured rather than capture, first learn rather than teach, first be a disciple rather than a teacher and master of his own.

We have an ear so that we may submit to others, and eyes that we may take care of others. Therefore, whoever in the church wants to become an eye and a leader and master of others, let him become an ear and a disciple first. This first.

The one who has not been tempted, what kind of things does he know? One who has not had experience, what kind of things does he know?

One who does not from experience know what temptations are like, will transmit not things that are known, but either things that are heard or seen, or, what is more dangerous, his own thoughts.

Therefore let him who wants to be sure and wants to counsel others faithfully first have some experience himself, first carry the cross himself and lead the way by his example, and so he will be made certain that he can also be of service to others."

School of Discipleship. Become a disciple first. It's what I've been doing with my pastor Tom May every Monday afternoon for the past three years. It has been my life the past three years. It is what I will be doing this next year in California. Before I can be entrusted with the hearts and minds of people, God will first make sure that what I transmit will not be of myself but of Him, wholly and entirely.

And He has left me a personal note as a reminder whenever I lose focus.

It's going to be an amazing year.

-Disciple of Christ, Jonathan Craigmyle


  1. Amen brother! Thanks for sharing.

  2. so good and I so needed to read this. Thank you for sharing and excited to walk with you this year :) -Lo

  3. Exciting. :-) I love the adventure.

    My understanding is that the "Discipleship" school is actually more "advanced" than the "Ministry" school in this case. Am I getting that right?

    Free blog tip from an amateur veteran: Use the "blockquote" feature for the extended quote. It makes it easier to tell what you have written and what is the quotation. It is best for quotations that are long, especially if they are more than one paragraph, although you can also use it for shorter quotes if you want to do so.

    You will find it in the editing tool when you open up this post to edit it.

    Anyways... Enough with the technical.

    I am excited to hear that you are moving forward with your calling!

    In Christ,


  4. Ahhh, good tip with the quotes. I'll keep that in mind next time I do a multi-paragraph quote.

    As far as the difference between the two schools goes I've heard a few interesting things. I've heard that BSSD is more about foundational in it's approach and attempts to establish foundational kingdom principles whereas BSSM is more about preparation for ministry. So one could argue that BSSM is the advance school. I wouldn't though. The other thing I was told is that while BSSM has over two thousand students, BSSD has just over 100. So BSSD is much more focused, you can't get lost in the crowd and when speakers come through we are allowed to connect with them.

    I'm sure there are lists of upsides to both schools. Personally I'm happy to be here not only because this is where God directed me but because I know that the better the grasp one has on the basics and the foundational principles, the better one can operate in that area and have greater longevity in the field.

    1. You can experiment with the quote thing very easily on this very post if you want to. Just go in to edit the post and put in blockquote. Voila!

      I'm glad you are in the right school at the right time. I look forward to hearing all about it.

      And I still need an excuse (and a pile of cash) to get out there for a visit.


      God Bless Your Socks Off!