Our group takes its name from the disciplined action of some first century fisherman, who - after working hard at their craft all night - take the time to wash their nets so as to better prepare and preserve them for future use (Luke 5:1-11). These young NetMenders did the very things that undisciplined people don't like to do, because they were able to subordinate their dislike to the strength of their purpose.
NetMenders deliberately employs principles and practices of self discipline for spiritual formation into Christ via:
Monthly discipleship groups
Daily internet or phone accountability for discipline goals
Weekly reviews via phone or internet
In order to achieve core mastery to:
Develop a character which is “self-controlled, upright, holy, and disciplined” (Titus 1:8)
Learn the power of delayed gratification
Prove a reliable steward of God’s resources including responsibility, money, calories, bytes, grace, and time
- Practice spiritual disciplines that promote godliness and transformation (2Cor 3:18)
Here's the famous "Saw Sharpening Story" which parallels the concept of "Net Mending" in Luke 5:
A man was struggling in the woods to saw down a tree. An old farmer came by, watched for a while, then quietly said, “What are you doing?”
“Can’t you see?” the man impatiently replied, “I’m sawing down this tree.”
“You look exhausted,” said the farmer. “How long have you been at it?”
“Over five hours, and I’m beat,” replied the man. “This is hard work.”
“That saw looks pretty dull,” said the farmer. “Why don’t you take a break for a few minutes and sharpen it? I’m sure it would go a lot faster.”
“I don’t have time to sharpen the saw,” the man says emphatically. “I’m too busy sawing!”
This page organizes our Forum Discussions (see example and template for sharing in the forum below); for downloadable resources, click here.
Please use this forum to post your roles and goals (NetMending goals) for the week. Just hit "reply" in the appropriate week and join the discussion with your own Roles and Goals for the week. As the forum progresses, we'll continue to keep our NetMending in view through the "Plan-Result-Revise" cycle in groups of three to five disciples.
The goal for each role should be "SMART" or "Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time bound." Your roles may vary from week to week, some may wish to focus solely on areas which require daily discipline like Christian, Husband, Father, Prayer, Bible student, Confessor, Evangelizer, Disciple, Discipler, Budget Manager, Home Owner, Roommate, Employee, Manager, Bible Talk Leader, Fitness, Responsible Eater, etc.
If you choose to focus on Spiritual Disciplines, then just name your "Role" according to the area of focus like "Prayer," "Scripture Memory," "Fasting," "Quiet Times" or "Bible Study." Then you can choose a goal according to that subject or Role. For example, in "Scripture Memory" you could set the goal to "Memorize Matthew 6:25-34 this week." For "Quiet Times" you could set the goal to: "Have a Quiet Time - read Bible and pray - before I eat anything each day this week."
Here's a template for sharing your Responsibilities or Roles (no more than 5) and Goals (1 per role):
"Ed Anton's Roles and Goals for the week:
1. Christian (role): Pray before eating each day this week (goal)
2. Husband: Ask about quiet time on at least three days
3. Father: Share a conviction from Scripture with each child everyday
4. Bible Talk Leader: Encourage every man in the Bible Talk everyday via phone
5. Budget Manager: Review our monthly budget progress with Deb by Friday"
Then, throughout the week, you can "Reply" again to the posts with your results and learnings. You can also use the Reply button to encourage others in their attempt to achieve to goals. Here's an example:
I'm doing much better on the non-family goals than I am doing with my wife and kids. I see that I've really taken my family for granted. I completely neglected to work on the budget. Familiarity breeds contempt. This is convicting and sobering. I'll revise accordingly to show my repentance by my deeds."
It's important to set weekly goals, but if you don't look at them on a daily basis, they'll get lost in the noise of life. So comment on your progress throughout the week - even throughout the day! Then at week's end, you can formally review your progress versus the goals you set and revise for next week. In summary: daily comments and weekly evaluation.
Do you already have 2-5 disciples with whom you would like to share your progress in becoming a better NetMender? Great, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I'll set you up with your own forum page to begin the journey. For now (until the forums get crowded) just reply to the appropriate week and get started with daily comments and weekly evaluations.
Need to connect with others to form a group? No problem. Contact me at email@example.com and I'll do my best to connect you in a forum here with others in pursuit of a disciplined life.