Spiritual Friendship

During times of trouble, the church has historically run toward the fire. As you navigate this pandemic and the trials it brings to your everyday life, what does it look like for you to run toward the fire? As a ministry working with Christian leaders, we see it as running toward people. And running toward […]

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In early April I repeatedly heard the word “pivot” to describe what we as leaders and organizations needed to be doing to adjust and survive in this global pandemic. I resisted the word. The metaphor is one I understand. I played basketball and could pivot with the best of my teammates. Redirect. Turn. Pass. And […]

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I have been thinking a good bit this afternoon about “the why” of mentoring and spiritual friendship in the Christian life. And as I let my mind go with this question once again, I found myself circling back to an essay I read years ago by Annie Dillard entitled “An Expedition to the Pole” (not […]

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A central feature of our culture is that we are relentlessly talked at––rarely listened to. Consequently, we have an aching hunger to be heard and noticed. Among the men and women with whom we meet, do we recognize their thirst to be heard and known and loved personally? Almost two decades after first planting the church […]

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God has ordained things that we grow in faith only through the frail instrumentality of one another.   St. John of the Cross Our growth in Christ does not occur in isolation; it takes place within the company of others who provide presence and perspective along the journey. One specific form of being “in the […]

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“Is it possible for people to miss their lives in the same way one misses a plane?” Walker Percy asks in his novel The Second Coming. With his character Will Barrett—a lonely widower, recently retired from a very successful business career—Percy confronts us with a person who has confused all the activity of his life […]

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This week I want to highlight a third practice that gives shape to walking well with others as a friend or a mentor. My reflections here are again adapted from our VP3 resource entitled Walking Alongside Others: A Mentoring Guide.  Practice #3 – Prayer Prayer in this mentoring context is about cultivating a deep trust in the […]

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This week I want to highlight the second of three primary practices that give shape to walking well with others as a friend or a mentor. Last week I addressed the practice of listening, this week question-asking, and next week prayerfulness. My reflections here are again adapted from our VP3 resource entitled Walking Alongside Others: A […]

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There are three primary practices that give shape to walking well with others as a friend or a mentor: listening, question-asking, and prayer. Over the next couple blog entries, I will briefly unpack each of these practices. My reflections here are adapted from our VP3 resource entitled, Walking Alongside Others: A Mentoring Guide. I highly recommend […]

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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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Intentionally walking with others, helping them grow deeper in their faith, becomes transformative when we make space to notice others particularly. For it is in the conditions of lives shared, honored, noticed, and enjoyed—that is, friendship—that something of the Spirit’s nurturing grace is imparted to us and through us to others. This noticing involves expecting […]

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I have a friend who recently completed The Journey. She grew up in church and has a strong legacy of faith. Yet in the midst of The Journey, something happened – she began to see things from a new vantage point . . . Reclaimed! Just this week I grabbed a swanky paintbrush along with […]

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