Renewal Through Shared Disciplines

Success isn’t measured by money or power or social rank. Success is measured by your discipline and inner peace.

Mike Ditka

Many of you know me to be a pretty disciplined person. For example, today will be my 1093rd day in a row with 10,000 or more steps. It takes discipline to keep that kind of streak alive. Disciplines can be great to keep you on track when it comes to reaching certain goals and to keep you out of trouble when it comes to avoiding unhealthy areas of life.

Disciplines can become stale after a while. Sometimes we forget why we established a habit in the first place. And sometimes we simply fail to draw the positive result out of the discipline. From time to time, we could all use a little shake up when it comes to our disciplines. We could all use help to form better habits.

Recently, I was on the phone with my Grandpa Miller. Grandpa recently turned 94 years old. Physically, he is definitely showing signs of his age. He can’t run around like he used to when he was in his 70s and 80s. And while is mind isn’t quite as sharp as it used to be, I’ve been impressed by how well he is doing mentally and spiritually. During our phone conversation, he shared with me his pattern for prayer.

On Mondays, Grandpa prays for missionaries. He prays for their strength, their wisdom, their safety, and their effectiveness in sharing the hope of Jesus with others.

On Tuesdays, Grandpa prays for tasks God would have him do.

On Wednesdays, Grandpa prays for more laborers. He prays for more people to do work for God’s Kingdom.

On Thursdays, Grandpa prays prayers of thanksgiving.

On Fridays, Grandpa prays for family. He prays for me. He prays for my wife and kids. He prays for the entire family.

On Saturdays, Grandpa prays that he might be saturated with the Word. He prays for a growing knowledge and understanding of the Bible.

On Sundays, Grandpa prays for sinners. He prays they would come to know Jesus as their personal Savior.


I’m so thankful Grandpa shared this with me. First, it’s part of his legacy – it is who Grandpa is, and I’m glad to know this and to know that I’m the subject of Grandpa’s prayers. Grandpa’s relationship with Jesus is a personal and deep relationship. I’m a blessed beyond measure by the faith of my parents and grandparents.

Grandpa’s discipline of daily prayer is a great reminder for me. This is an area for me to further develop. It’s easy to dismiss prayer as ineffective and lacking real action, but the Bible reminds us that the prayers of a righteous man produces much.

And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise them up. If they have sinned, they will be forgiven. Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.

James 5:15-16 (NIV)

In this year of renew, I’m encouraged and renewed by Grandpa’s shared discipline.

What disciplines have others shared with you that have encouraged you and spurred you on towards good? What’s one discipline you can share with someone else today that will encourage and renew them?

And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds.

Hebrews 10:24 (NIV)