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There is a Hebrew saying: “Hold a book in your hand and you’re a pilgrim at the gates of a new city.” A really good book gives shape to a new horizon, stretching our imaginations of what is good and important and possible in the world. So this summer, whether we lounge by the pool, […]

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Most recently I have found myself gravitating toward the theme of brokenness. What do wise people have to say about those uncomfortable and disorienting times when we come face to face with our frailty, our fallenness, and our limits? Frederick Buechner’s insight in The Sacred Journey: A Memoir of Early Days has grabbed me this week.  Buechner writes,    […]

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A phrase interrupted the tasks and interactions of my morning, and I think invited me to a bit of a focusing thought for this Holy Week–the surprise of brokenness.   Near the tail end of Greg Paul’s wonderful little book God in the Alley: Being and Seeing Jesus in a Broken World (Shaw, 2004), Paul […]

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Recently I have been listening to some folks who are getting close to finishing up The Journey and are considering moving along our pathway into the next process A Way of Life. And as I listen to them sort this decision out, I keep on thinking about psychologist Henry Cloud’s words in his book Integrity: The […]

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Growing up into Christ involves far more than acquiring the right information. It requires a deep connection between truth and life, between belief and behavior. And such connection only occurs when we take extended time for dialogue or conversation with others about these things that matter most to us.   Dialogue is a critical gift on the journey. […]

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Friendship does not grow naturally out of the fast-paced, competitive, and isolated lives so many of us live. In reality, our work priorities and our household busy-ness most often stand against the cultivation of deep friendship. Yet it is friendship that most often describes an essential condition for Christian maturity. As we make space for a common sharing, […]

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As I was thinking and praying this afternoon about the many different folks spread throughout North America, walking through The Journey process, being invited to seriously, honestly and courageously seek God’s gracious presence in the story of their lives, I was mindful of writer Madeleine L’Engle’s profound insights drawn from the life of Joseph (Genesis 37-50). L’Engle […]

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During our VP3 Webinar: Barriers to Spiritual Growth on Wednesday, I was struck  by the panelists’ and audience’s interest in discussing busyness as a chief barrier to maturity in our faith communities. I found myself later in the afternoon returning to the question, what does a busy pace do that so frustrates our maturity?   It seems the relationship of busyness to […]

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“People who wait have received a promise that allows them to wait. We can only really wait if what we are waiting for has already begun for us.” “A waiting person is a patient person. The word ‘patience’ means the willingness to stay where we are and live it out to the fullest in the […]

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Like many of you, I’ve worked through The Journey a few times with groups of wonderful people. I’m in my fifth go round, still learning, still working through my personal journey, this time with a new group of friends.   Today I read something I’ve read before (at least four times, anyway), and it spoke to […]

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“The church is always more than a school… but the church cannot be less than a school.”[1]   Historian Jaroslav Pelikan included these critical words on the first page of his five-volume history of Christian doctrine. Around VantagePoint3 circles, we would tweak Pelikan’s language a little bit by saying—the church is always more than a […]

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I have a hunch that as a reader of this blog you lead adults and care about their ongoing development. With my “Practical Pam” hat firmly on, let me encourage you with my top three non-negotiable adult learning tips. You will notice similarities between them.   I challenge you to identify an upcoming adult meeting, […]

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