The Good Life and The “God With Us” Gospel (Pt. 3)!

In Christian Leadership, Community, Culture, Discipleship, Formation, Fully Awake, Spiritual Formation, Uncategorized by BizgaineyLeave a Comment

Every culture clamors for wisdom. From Socrates to George Bernard Shaw, cultural shakers and shapers have always  pitched wisdom; hoping to provide a pathway for a life well lived. Modern experience concedes the point: we all long for a better way of life.  We all long for the good life – a Life Well Lived.  We will give just about anything to obtain this good life we seek. Want a better home? . . . move here. Want a better kid? . . . take this parenting course. Want  a
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I “Just Wanna Be” A Big Rock Star!

In Community, Contemplation, Discipleship, Spiritual Formation, Uncategorized by BizgaineyLeave a Comment

Fame, fortune, financial accomplishment.

The good life.

We all want it!  We all exhaust ourselves in pursuit of it! The good life and her accouterments entice us all.

Nickelback’s 2005 hit Rockstar – a song which embraces and encourages the pursuit of fame, fortune and financial accomplishment – may well provide the modern rhythm that has captured a generation (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L3iO5vMIAUQ).

We all want to be a Rockstar.  So it seems!

While it’s human nature to dream of the good life, many define the good life by using terms like conquering …
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Born For More! Created For Meaning! Designed For Eternity!

In Contemplation, Culture, Formation, Spiritual Formation, Uncategorized by BizgaineyLeave a Comment

More than twenty years ago Freddy Mercury hauntingly asked the world, “Who wants to live forever?” (here, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5L8-FTvSVxs).

According to the Fall Out Boys, we all do.

That is, at least, what their iconic hit Centuries envisions:

Some legends are told Some turn to dust or to gold But you will remember me Remember me for centuries

Centuries packs quite a punch (here, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LBr7kECsjcQ). A punch that is felt in a host of ways.  From the driving guitar riffs, which lie just beneath the surface of the song’s teeming waters …
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The Journey Of A Burning Heart

In Christian Leadership, Community, Contemplation, Culture, Spiritual Formation, Surrender, Uncategorized by Bizgainey2 Comments

Pillar Community Church has been interacting with Ruth Barton’s latest book, Life in Christ Together, for a few months. The book is gently nudging us toward a fresh experience of doing life together within the context of ministry and modern life.

Ruth’s text traces the Emmaus road story (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Luke+24%3A13+-+33&version=CEB .).

In chapter eight, she frames the journey of discernment – an ongoing discovery of the presence of Christ – by proposing six intervals or intersections through which we all travel.

I sense that each intersection may serve as markers for …
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Wisdom For Your Week: Prayer, A Way of Being with God

In Formation, Prayer, Spiritual Formation, Uncategorized, WORD OF THE WEEK by Bizgainey1 Comment

PRAYER, A WAY OF BEING WITH GOD Prayer seems to be Paul’s term for the deep inner posture of one’s being toward God in open receptivity and pliable responsiveness. It is the term he uses when he exhorts us to “pray constantly” (1 Thess 5:17 RSV), to “continue steadfastly in prayer” (Col 4:2 RSV), to “be constant in prayer” (Rom 12:12 RSV). Praying without ceasing obviously presumes an inner posture of being for its fulfillment, a posture that undergirds all the activities and relationships of life. With this term Paul…
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Control Is An Illusion!

In Christian Leadership, Formation, Fully Awake, Habits, Purpose and Meaning, Spiritual Formation by Bizgainey2 Comments

Truly, we control very little if anything. Control always seems to be the posture from which our life is lived.

CONTROL: THE UNIVERSAL HUMAN CONDITION

Control – or failure to surrender – has been called the original sin of creation and remains a continual struggle for humankind. Our drive to control is evident in nearly every realm of life – our relationship with God, others and creation. Surrender is difficult, counter-cultural and, in many ways, foreign to human experience.

Jennifer Shaw, a gifted musician, speaker and writer, visited our church …
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Wisdom For Your Week: Contemplation and Interior Strength

In Contemplation, Father Thomas Keating, Spiritual Formation by Bizgainey5 Comments

Contemplation – Interior Strength The effectiveness of action depends on the source from which it springs.   If it is coming out of the false self with its shadow side, it is severely limited.  If it is coming out of a person who is immersed in God, it is extremely effective.   The contemplative state . . . brings Christ to the world. ~ Father Thomas Keating


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Can My Brokenness Become A Beacon?

In Brokenness, Fully Awake, Habits, Purpose and Meaning, Spiritual Formation, Surrender by Bizgainey2 Comments

This week I have been reading Ruth Barton’s book, Pursuing God’s Will Together.  One section – of this important and insightful read – has been particularly eye-opening.  Ruth describes some of the values she and the Transforming Center are committed to practicing together. Her words encourage us to be honest with ourselves and the story God is writing in and through us.  Her encouragement, has particular relevance to spiritual leadership; the conviction, compassion, and concern we show to those around us!  On pages, 100 – 102, she writes,

“Closely related …
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The Boys of Summer and The Shape of Our Soul!

In Contemplation, Discipleship, Habits, Spiritual Formation by Bizgainey3 Comments

The longer I live, the more I believe the statement pictured above. What we do shapes who we become. Experience proves this to be true time and time again. Most of us believe that our habits or practices reveal what’s in our heart. That may be true, but it fails to acknowledge that our habits also shape our heart!

Baseball season is in full swing, and I love it! I believe baseball is the most aesthetic of all sports. There is an internal – intrinsic – beauty to the rhythm …
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