Disruptive and Dynamic Process of Spiritual Formation
When I awakened to and accepted this disruptive and dynamic process of spiritual formation, I then began to establish it as a solid foundation for life and ministry.
After eight years (really more) of traveling this road, I am becoming convinced that the disruptive and dynamic process of spiritual formation ought to be the mark of every ministry. Particularly any ministry desiring to seek the Kingdom of God in Christ and invite others to do the same!
I suspect that others are awakening to these realities and are looking for someone who has gone before them and can provide some guideposts along the way.
When A Journey is More Than a Destination
Why would I recommend this for folks seeking a more life-giving way of ministry?
Because a disruptive and dynamic journey is one that is tethered to the invitation of Christ. It’s an invitation to join Him and surrender to His good will for humankind.
It’s an invitation to a journey with Him as we are empowered by Him for life and ministry.
This is exactly what we see in the Gospels! When Jesus begins to reveal God’s plan of redemption, he does so by inviting his initial followers to actually follow him!
He says things like, “If you’re going to come after me, deny yourself, take up your cross, and follow.” This invitation is an invitation to an evergrowing and more deeply rooted journey with Christ than most churches are ministries pretend to represent.
Because lasting change requires ongoing disruption because the seed of Christ is always rooting more deeply into our soul.
Modern church mechanisms aren’t about rooting, surrendering, following, sacrificing, and trusting. Rather, they seem to be about helping us be better, try harder, or do more.
Down the Rabbit Hole, We Go
Awakening to and accepting this disruptive and dynamic process of spiritual formation has led (and is driving) me to flip a host of things upside down. Such flipping helps me get them right-side up within the new Kingdom of God’s coming in Christ.
Doing so (flipping) has shaped the tenor of the entire Pillar ministry and the people who are stewarding her.
The main ‘flipping’ tool I rely on is that of asking questions.
One question that I continually turn to, especially in private seasons of silence, solitude, and contemplative prayer, is:
Lord, if you are inviting me (and us) on a journey that’s more like a disruptive and dynamic process, then what are the things in me – and in this ministry – that must be surrendered and – potentially – changed?
Here are some of the answers:
- Spiritual Rhythms/Disciplines
- The Gospel
- Small Groups
- Congregational Care, and Community Outreach.
- Discerning the Will of the Lord, Together.
First, The way in which we approach Discipleship and spiritual formation will require a fundamental overhaul.
The primary “flip” here is one from control to surrender, from accumulating information about God to yielding to the formation of God. It’s spending more time in contemplation on Him and reflecting on His Love, revealed through His word.
Secondly, The way in which we approach the Worship environment will require a fundamental overhaul.
The basic flip here is to move from an approach that’s lecture-heavy to more of a dialogue. Next, it requires a move from being sermon centered to being liturgy filled. Then it demands a vital sensitivity to the movement of God’s spirit, who is inviting everyone to participate and contribute!
I am drawn to a new, or newer, word for this called Liturgicostal: Spirit-led and empowering practices of historic Christian liturgy.
Third, an intentional focus on developing disciplines and/or Rhythms of Grace to help us enjoy the presence of Christ within us and awaken to the presence of Christ among us.
The development of ancient spiritual discipline and sacred rhythms further solidifies the reality of God’s presence in a world that’s often in chaos. We practice both individual and corporate rhythms. Rhythms such as:
- Silence and Solitude
- Contemplative Reading. We’ve spent entire worship settings hearing the word of Christ read and silently seeking His word for our life
- Review of the Day
- Fixed-Hour Prayer
These rhythms are only a few of those that we practice. All of them have served and are serving to awaken us to Christ’s will in our life and ministry.
I am not sure if one or the other of these captures your heart.
If so, hang on as I intend to explore them more intently in the coming months!
A brief foray into numbers 4 – 7,
- The Gospel
- Small Groups
- Congregational Care, and Community Outreach
- Discerning the Will of the Lord, Together,
coming next week!
Disrupting to Renew!