Words from Mark Scandrette, the Founder of the Jesus Dojo

I’ve been following Mark Scandrette and his work at ReImagine out in San Francisco since I read his book Practicing the Way of Jesus (I call it the Jesus Dojo book). His book played a large part in my decision not only to start this work at The Pilgrimage but also in how it’s run and what we do. If that’s not recommendation enough, please go out and get his book. It’s awesome. I consider it part of my trifecta on the art of Christian manliness, which is composed of his book, The Barbarian Way by Erwin McManus, and Wild at Heart by John Eldredge.

Way of Jesus

I thought I’d talk about Mark just a bit by actually letting him talk about himself. I just received the latest newsletter from ReImagine, and I sat and thought about how to reframe some of his words in ways that came from my heart, but I couldn’t. I couldn’t say it any better than Mark did.

One of the upcoming tasks I have for my church as we get ready to celebrate our first anniversary is to form our mission and core purpose statements. It’s something we sort of did when we started, but the church has evolved some during this first year in ways I didn’t expect. I think it’s time to allow our group to decide our current mission and put it into words. I’d love to copy Mark’s mission for ReImagine, but I won’t. I’ll certainly be using it for inspiration though.

“The Mission of ReIMAGINE is to help people become more fully human through engagement  with the life and teachings of Jesus.

We do this by (1) awakening imagination; (2) initiating experiments and training practices; and (3) empowering leaders who can teach others.”

Here’s what Mark said to introduce the latest newsletter…

“Many of us live and work in contexts that are divorced from the rhythms of the natural world. We have lost our connection to the soil, our food sources, and the skill of making things with our hands. We rarely notice the rising or setting of the sun. We gulp our food without tasting. We rarely pause to look at the flowers or into the eyes of a child. Our pace of life affects our capacity to appreciate the goodness of God.

We make it a priority to remind ourselves and others that we are God’s beloved. Often we’ve found that damaging decisions are made when we buy into the lie that we aren’t worth the extra effort of a healthy choice. If we root our identity first in being precious children of God, then choosing self-care can come from a belief we are stewarding God’s creation, rather than being selfish. In order to be sanctified, we first have to believe we are worth being sanctified. Join us this winter season for three events that engage with self-care and sanctification…”

Now that’s what I’m talking about. I fear that I’m getting all wrapped up in the busy-ness and activity of leading this church that I’m missing out on the spirituality of it. That’s what I need to get back to. That’s what I need to emphasize in my own life for this coming new year and the second year of life for The Pilgrimage.

Thanks for the words Mark and thanks for bringing my mind, heart, and soul back to that realization. I hope to make it out to San Fran and hang out with you at some point.


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