The Story of a Church: A Disruptive and Dynamic Journey!

In Christian Leadership, Church Leadership, Church Planting, Formation, Spiritual Formation, Surrender, Transformation, Worship by BizgaineyLeave a Comment

Spiritual Formation as a Disruptive and Dynamic Journey!

God’s Kingdom has come (already begun) with the birth, death, and resurrection of Christ. This is an indisputable biblical fact.

It’s also true that his kingdom rule continues to be contested!  The powers that once ran and sought to ruin his good world through sin and shame continue to exert notable force.

Even as the often slow but certain Kingdom-coming continues to make its presence known!

These two realities

That God’s reordered rule in and through His son, our Messiah, has already…
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Does Eminem Get the Gospel?

In Contemplation, Culture, Desire, Discipleship, Formation, Habits, Purpose and Meaning, Resolution, Surrender by Bizgainey2 Comments

Does Eminem Get the Gospel?

Legend has it that The Times once sent an inquiry to famous authors, asking the question, “What’s wrong with the world today?”

To which G.K. Chesterton responded:

“Dear Sir,

I am.

Yours, G.K. Chesterton.”

Eminem’s 2013 smash hit, Monster, topped the charts in no fewer than twelve countries.

Featuring guest vocalist Rihanna, the heart-thumping rhythms and hard-driving vocals were greeted by worldwide applause and assault.

Many within the Entertainment industry applauded Monster, while many in the Christian community assaulted Monster.

Admittedly, his lyrics are often …
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Every New Year Begs the Question, “Can I Ever Really Change?”

In Brokenness, Change, Formation, Resolution, Spiritual Formation, Surrender, Transformation by Bizgainey3 Comments

Every New Year Begs the Question, “Can I Ever Really Change?”

The energetic and ardent sound of Gungor, what some have called an Alt-Folk band, has captured the attention of millions of followers since 2010.

With good reason.

One of my favorite pieces is their song, Beautiful Things.  Beautiful Things grabbed me the first time I heard the moving lyrics purr out of lead vocalist Lisa Gungor’s mouth.

It did so within the first stanza by asking a most penetrating question.

The question is one that dogs every human alive.  …
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What is a Contemplative Bible Study? Pt. 4, Mediation that’s Uniquely Christian

In Contemplation, Formation, Fully Awake, Habits, Spiritual Formation, Surrender by BizgaineyLeave a Comment

Meditation that’s Uniquely Christian

Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.”  Colossians 3:16

The subject of Colossians 3:16 is “the word of Christ.”

While that seems self-evident, it’s important to note a few implications of this fact.  First, the subject is not me or you.  The subject is always Christ.

This is why Paul invites us to surrender.

We often come to the Word …
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What is A Contemplative Bible Study? Pt. 2: Mountains, Metaphor, and Meditation

In Contemplation, Discipleship, Formation, Habits, Ministry, Spiritual Formation, Surrender by BizgaineyLeave a Comment

What is A Contemplative Bible Study? Pt. 2: Mountains, Metaphor, and Meditation

Last week I retreated with a group of fellow believers at a Franciscan Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado.  This retreat is the final in a series of retreats facilitated by the Apprentice Institute and James Bryan Smith†.  Though it was our final retreat together, it was my first visit to Colorado – ever.

Having heard much about Colorado’s beautiful landscape, I was anticipating some wonderful views filled with moments of majesty and awe.

 

And, though what I …
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Happy Birthday, Pillar! I’m Going to Tell You A Story I’ve Never Told Before!

In Christian Leadership, Community, Formation, Ministry, Prayer, Purpose and Meaning, Spiritual Formation, Surrender by Bizgainey5 Comments

I am going to tell you a story I have never told before.

Storytelling is, invariably, a one-sided affair. The story being told is shaped by the one doing the telling. The light of story is refracted through the life lens of the storyteller. This story is no different. This story is a part of the Pillar story, but it is hopelessly bound to the storyteller who – in this case – is me, her founding pastor. And, though it’s only a partial story – as all stories are – …
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With Desire So Demanding, Why is God So Distant?

In Desire, Discipleship, Formation, Freedom, Fully Awake, Purpose and Meaning, Spiritual Formation, Surrender by Bizgainey1 Comment

The first month of a new year is often a time of expectancy and hope. The onset of the new year typically provides a few weeks during which we celebrate the goodness of God, the faithful promise keeper! We carry with us new visions of satisfaction; replacing yesterday’s memories of despair and hunger. Indeed, we hope – at least in some measure – to discover satisfaction and fulfillment in the year ahead. That’s why I have spent the bulk of January reflecting on the nature and nurture of soul satisfying …
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Resolutions? No Mas. 2016 is about Life Shaping Desire!

In Desire, Discipleship, Fully Awake, Habits, Spiritual Formation, Surrender, Thanksgiving by Bizgainey3 Comments

2016 Resolutions?  I resolve to remain unresolved!  How’s that??

No mas!  I’m done!  Uncle!  I am, in modern vernacular, tapping out.

I considered putting ink to paper and developing a resolution or two.  Then I spied March’s dissolution in the fogged over windshield of life’s hyped up, over maxed, half-baked January resolution.  Such foresight has given me the wisdom to say no more to the resolution parade.

This year, rather than a long list of short lived resolutions, I am spending some time Reflecting on Life Shaping Desire.  These reflections …
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Fully Aware and Actively Engaged (The Good Life, Pt. 4)

In Christian Leadership, Community, Contemplation, Culture, Formation, Fully Awake, Purpose and Meaning, Spiritual Formation, Surrender, Worship by BizgaineyLeave a Comment

You know when you have been in the company of someone who listens.  Simply being around them is a blessing of immense and vast depth.  It’s as if you’ve been refreshed. Washed by cool spring waters of nourishing clarity.   To hear and respond is both fundamentally relational and vitally human.  They are the signature affections of creation and the singular hope of humankind.

They are affections we would do well to nurture today!  Indeed, those who have gone before us found that nurturing an affection for hearing and responding developed …
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