by Pastor Brian Phillips
John Wesley (1703-1791) was an Anglican minister who, with the help of his brother Charles and friend George Whitefield, founded the Methodist movement. Wesley served as a missionary to native Americans, itinerate preacher, prison minister (during his days at Oxford), and authored numerous books and hymns.
In 1735, while journeying to the American colonies with his brother, their ship was severely battered by a storm. While most of the travelers were anxious and frightened, a group of Moravian Christians sang hymns. Wesley was deeply touched by their seemingly unshakable faith and piety, which influenced his later theology and practices.
Among Wesley's personal spiritual practices were questions for self-examination. Here they are, as listed in Jake Hanson's book Crossing the Divide:
1. Am I consciously or unconsciously creating the impression that I am better than I really am? In other words, am I a hypocrite?
2. Am I honest in all my acts and words, or do I exaggerate?
3. Do I confidentially pass on to others what has been said to me in confidence?
4. Can I be trusted?
5. Am I a slave to dress, friends, work or habits?
6. Am I self-conscious, self-pitying, or self-justifying?
7. Did the Bible live in me today?
8. Do I give the Bible time to speak to me every day?
9. Am I enjoying prayer?
10. When did I last speak to someone else of my faith?
11. Do I pray about the money I spend?
12. Do I get to bed on time and get up on time?
13. Do I disobey God in anything?
14. Do I insist upon doing something about which my conscience is uneasy?
15. Am I defeated in any part of my life?
16. Am I jealous, impure, critical, irritable, touchy or distrustful?
17. How do I spend my spare time?
18. Am I proud?
19. Do I thank God that I am not as other people, especially as the Pharisees who despised the publican?
20. Is there anyone whom I fear, dislike, disown, criticize, hold a resentment toward or disregard? If so, what am I doing about it?
21. Do I grumble or complain constantly?
22. Is Christ real to me?