The Cornerstone Fellows
“Fellow: a person in the same position, involved in the same activity, or otherwise associated with another.”
The Cornerstone Fellows is a discipling program for men and women of our church who are motivated to move forward in their Christian life in community with others. It combines theological education, spiritual formation, and ministry training to help believers grow in their love for God and love for their neighbor.
The program runs from October to June and consists of several components. Once a month all Fellows will meet on a Saturday morning for teaching, group discussion, and prayer, and once a month each Fellow will meet with a mentor who will seek to address particular questions and needs and guide the Fellow in spiritual growth and areas of ministry. Each week the Fellows will meet with a prayer partner from the group for accountability and encouragement.
Components of the Cornerstone Fellows program—
•Written Application. This assesses the seriousness of interest and provides a sense of the appropriateness of this program for each applicant. It also provides a self-assessment that will be helpful in the mentoring process.
•Kickoff Dinner. This will be a time of fun and fellowship designed to help us get to know one another and build a team spirit as we move into the program.
•Saturday morning sessions. These provide a time of teaching, small group interaction and prayer.
•Readings. This provides for input in the three areas of theological education, spiritual formation and ministry training. For this phase, readings will include two books and a number of shorter articles and selections from books.
•Response Papers. Each month each Fellow will write a two to three page response to the section assigned in the book Know the Truth.
•Spiritual Journal. Each Fellow will keep a spiritual journal with entries at least three times a week recording thoughts from the book by Monod and/or from Bible reading and meditation.
•Monthly meetings with mentor. This provides individual spiritual direction and accountability. The mentor can address the particular needs of each Fellow.
•Weekly meeting with Fellows prayer partner. This provides mutual encouragement and accountability.
•Fellows Service Project. The team will be working together to serve the broader church community.
•Individual ministry—each Fellow will be exploring spiritual gifts and will consider ways to test and utilize them. The area of ministry of each person will be determined with the mentor.
•Scripture meditation and memory. As a spiritual discipline, each month the Fellows will be given a biblical passage for meditation. A portion of that passage will be assigned for memorization.
•Half Day of Prayer. Coming at the beginning of Easter Week, this time will challenge us to spend an extended time in silence before God. We will debrief around dinner.
•Overnight Retreat. This will allow a more relaxed environment in which to interact and evaluate what God has been doing in our lives during the past five months.
Who should apply to be a Cornerstone Fellow?
This program is for those who are highly motivated to grow as believers and who are willing to do the reading, to be involved in ministry, to be accountable to a mentor, and to commit to helping others in the group become more mature in Christ.
How can you get involved?
If you are interested, you must fill out a questionnaire which will assess your interest and availability. It will also provide an initial personal assessment of strengths and weaknesses, interests, abilities, and experience that will aid in the mentoring process.
Monthly Topics and Assignments—
Bruce Milne, Know the Truth, Revised Edition, IVP
Adolphe Monod, Living in the Hope of Glory, P. & R. Publishing
Brother Lawrence, The Practice of the Presence of God
John Bunyan, Pilgrim’s Progress in Modern English, Revised and updated by L. Edward Hazelbaker, Bridge-Logos Press, 1998. [We will read Part 1]
Thomas á Kempis, Of the Imitation of Christ, Whitaker House, 1981.
Readings listed, with response papers, are to be completed by the meeting date on which they appear.
Read one chapter of Monod per week, beginning after the first meeting.
Readings marked with an asterisk are optional for those who want to go deeper.
•First Meeting: What is a Christian and the challenge of discipleship.
David Wells, “Conversion: How and Why We Turn to God,” Christianity Today, 1/14/91.
Paul Helm, The Beginnings: Word and Spirit in Conversion, chap. 3, “Faith and Repentance.”
Saint Augustine, Confessions, pp. 145-154. The Story of Augustine’s conversion in A.D. 386.
Donald Whitney, “10 Questions to Ask to Make Sure You’re Still Growing,” Discipleship Journal
Jonathan Edwards, “Advice for Young Converts.” A letter sent to a young Christian woman during the New England revivals of the 1740s offering pastoral counsel.
J. C. Ryle, “Assurance,” in Holiness: Its Nature, Hindrances, Difficulties and Roots (1879).
Read all of these and then choose one on which to write a one-page response.
For this month, meditate on Rom. 8:12-17. Memorize at least v. 17.
•Second Meeting: Understanding the Times, with a special focus on Postmodernism.
Adolphe Monod, Living in the Hope of Glory, chaps. 1-5
Bruce Milne, Know the Truth, Chaps. 1,2: “Authority, Revelation”
Alexander Solzhenitsyn, An Address to the Harvard University graduating class of June, 1978.
Bill Kynes, “Postmodernism: A Primer for Pastors,” Ministerial Forum, 8.1, Fall, 1997.
Daniel B. Clendenin, “Only Way: Answering the Argument That All Religions Are More or Less True,” Christianity Today, 1/12/98.
Daniel Taylor, “Deconstructing the Gospel of Tolerance,” Christianity Today, 1/11/99.
*Harold Netland, Encountering Religious Pluralism: The Challenge to Christian Faith and Mission (2001), chap. 10, “Toward an Evangelical Theology of Religions,”
For this month, meditate on Col. 3:1-17. Memorize at least v. 16.
•Third Meeting: The Word of God—God Speaking
Milne, Know the Truth, Chap. 3: “Scripture.”
Monod, Hope of Glory, chaps. 6-8
J. I. Packer, “Our Lifeline,” Christianity Today, 10/28/96
Robert Boardman, “The Neglected Exercise”
Timothy George, “That We Mean When We Say It’s True,” Christianity Today, 10/23/95
Tremper Longman, “Seven Keys to Understanding Scripture,”
“How to Read the Psalms.”
Thoughts on Meditation and Lectio Divina
For this month, meditate on Ps. 119:9-16. Memorize at least v. 16.
•Fourth Meeting: Knowing our Great God
Milne, Know the Truth, Part 2: “God,” pp. 67-111
Monod, Hope of Glory, chaps. 9-12
J. I. Packer, Knowing God, chap. 3, “Knowing and Being Known.”
A.W. Tozer, The Pursuit of God, chap. 8, “Restoring the Creator-Creature Relation.”
For this month, meditate on Jer. 9:23-10:16. Memorize at least 9:23,24.
•Fifth Meeting: Who does God say that I am?
Milne, Know the Truth, Part 3: “The Human Condition,” pp. 113-159
Monod, Hope of Glory, chaps. 13-17
C. S. Lewis, “The Weight of Glory.”
John Stott, “Am I Supposed to Hate Myself or Love Myself?” Christianity Today.
Jonathan Edwards, “Personal Narrative.”
Understanding the Gospel
Milne, Know the Truth, Revised Edition, IVP. Part 4—The person and work of Christ (pp. 161-220)
Thomas R. Kelly, “The Simplification of Life”
Jerry Bridges, “The Fear of God”
Jerry Bridges, “Gospel-Driven Sanctification”
Two Ways to Live—Learning to communicate the message simply
Scripture Memory: Rev. 4:11; Rom. 3:10-12
•Sixth Meeting—The Challenges We Face
C. S. Lewis, The Screwtape Letters
Dietrich Bonhoeffer, “Costly Grace” and “The Call to Discipleship” from The Cost of Discipleship, 1937.
Scripture Memory: Heb. 9:27; 1 Pet. 3:18a
•Seventh Meeting—Living with Power
Milne, Know the Truth, Part 5—The Person and Work of the Holy Spirit (pp. 221-258)
Richard Foster, “Like Christ: What Is Supposed to Happen in the Christian Life.”
John Stott, “The Unforbidden Fruit”
Scripture Memory: 1 Pet. 1:3; John 3:36
Half Day of Prayer– Sunday, 3:00-6:00 p.m., followed by dinner together—
“Pray without ceasing”: Meeting with God in a Half Day of Prayer
Brother Lawrence, The Practice of the Presence of God
•Eighth Meeting—The Role of the Church in the Life of the Christian
Milne, Part 6—The Church (pp. 259-308)
Richard Lovelace, The Dynamics of Spiritual Life: An Evangelical Theology of Renewal, IVP, 1979, chap. 4.
Scripture Memory: Mt. 5:1-16
•Ninth Meeting—The Spiritual Journey
John Bunyan, Pilgrim’s Progress, Part 1 (pp. 1-115)
Scripture Memory: Mt. 5:17-20
•Tenth Meeting— The Spiritual Journey
John Bunyan, Pilgrim’s Progress, Part 1 (pp. 117-221)
Scripture Memory: Mt. 5:21-32
•Eleventh Meeting—Moving Toward the Goal
Milne, Part 7—The last things (pp. 309-348)
Richard Lovelace, The Dynamics of Spiritual Life: An Evangelical Theology of Renewal, IVP, 1979, chap. 5.
Scripture Memory: Mt. 5:33-48
For this month, meditate on Rom. 7:7-8:2. Memorize at least 8:1,2.