Looking for My Family

Imagine this scene: a group of twenty or so United Methodist leaders are gathered in a circle for the opening prayer of a weekend training in spiritual formation.  The leader begins with asking each member of the group to center her thoughts on God “as you understand God…”  This seemingly innocuous qualification opens the door […]

The Problem of Mixed Motives

I’ve been talking to people lately about a roadblock that I think I see in spiritual growth.  It looks like a two-step process: (1) “get” (understand) the principle and then (2) “apply” it, which means to incorporate it into our, attitudes and practices, to make it part of who we are.  Knowledge and application are […]

How Do We Cultivate Awareness?

I’ve been watching this phenomenon and participating in it myself for years, since I was a college student.  It’s the infamous “quiet time,” our evangelical colloquialism for a much-needed and advocated-for spiritual discipline.  It once was called “personal devotion” or “devotions” – that regular daily time of reading a Bible passage or verse and using […]

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