Archive for 2014

How Silently, How Silently, The Wondrous Gift is Given

Christmas Eve:  Isaiah 9:2-7 Psalm 96 Titus 2:11-14 Luke 2:1-14 (15-20) Christmas Day:  Isaiah 52:7-10 Psalm 98 Hebrews 1:1-4 (5-12) John 1:1-14 Click for complete Advent calendar (Cycle B) and guidance on using the lectionary. “Christ is born to us today, in order that he might appear to the whole world through us.” -Thomas Merton…

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What does transforming leadership look like for Pastor Prince Rivers?

Prince Rivers

Note: What is the impact of the Transforming Center in the lives of leaders? Prince Rivers, Senior Pastor at United Metropolitan Missionary Baptist Church, reflects on his Transforming Community® experience. I have been a pastor for 15 years. Most pastors spend the majority of their time pouring out without ever having anyone pour into them. The Transforming Community experience has…

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5 Christmas Gift Ideas for the people you love

Looking for something a bit unique for a special Christmas gift? Something you can’t buy anywhere else?  This Christmas celebrate the coming of our Lord with some of these gift ideas from Transforming Resources. Most are exclusively available from the Transforming Center. Stocking stuffer – Christmastide: Music in Solitude CD. Our newest CD is a perfect companion…

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Advent – An Invitation to Wait on God

Advent candles

Lectionary readings for November 30, 2014. Isaiah 64:1-9; Psalm 80:1-7, 17-19; 1 Corinthians 1:3-9; Mark 13:24-37 Click for complete Advent calendar (Cycle B) and guidance on using the lectionary. “O that you would tear open the heavens and come down!”—Isaiah 64:1 Waiting is one of God’s immensely sweeping invitations. To wait expectantly and with open hands…

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A Different Kind of Calendar

“When we submit our lives to what we read in Scripture, we find that we are not being led to see God in our stories but our stories in God’s. God is the larger context and plot in which our stories find themselves.” – Eugene Peterson I can still remember the first time I heard…

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Q&A with Ruth About New Book Life Together in Christ

Life Together in Christ by Ruth Haley Barton

Why are community and spiritual transformation two of the most over-promised and under-delivered aspects of the church today? Ruth Haley Barton: When I hear people speak in glowing terms about their vision for community, I have my doubts. When they tell me about painful things that have happened to them in community, I am never surprised.…

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With Gratitude for Pastors Everywhere

With gratitude for pastors everywhere

“On the day I called, you answered me, you increased my strength of soul.”  Psalm 138:3 Several years ago I went to a particularly difficult memorial service with my daughter, Haley. It was the funeral for one of her friends from high school who died in a complicated way from causes that were not entirely…

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Who’s Your Training Partner?

training partner Ironman

I changed out of my dress slacks and button-down into spandex tri-shorts and my favorite red technical shirt as slowly as I could. It had been a long day at the office with several meetings and requests for assistance. I knew what was ahead so I was in no hurry. Most days I looked forward…

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Pursuing God’s Will Together Summit Photos

“What an awesome experience. It was more than I could have imagined, it was life transforming.” “Excellent theological and Biblical foundation laid through the teaching.” We’re thankful for the many pastors, leaders, and teams who participated in the 4th Pursuing God’s Will Together Summit held in Lombard, IL at Northern Seminary. Below are some highlights.…

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Transformation Before My Eyes

Transforming Community #10

“See, I am doing a new deed, even now it comes to light; can you not see it?”  (Isaiah 43:19, The Jerusalem Bible) As a former long-term pastor of a congregation, I had the honor of witnessing occasional spiritual transformation in the lives of congregants.  Generally, the changes were more gradual than sudden, more subtle than…

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Ministry update and match gift opportunity

Match opportunity ends May 31st

Out of 20 pastors who enter ministry, how many will stay in ministry until they retire? As a former pastor I would have guessed possibly 15, but probably 10. I was not prepared for the real answer—1! This sad reality is not so surprising if you listen to the news. Almost monthly we hear about a Christian leader…

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What does transforming leadership look like for Pastor Vincent Rife?

Vincent Rife

Note: What is the impact of the Transforming Center in the lives of leaders? Vincent Rife, Lead Pastor at Grace Christian Church, shares about corporate leadership discernment (from Pursuing God’s Will Together: A Discernment Summit for Leaders) and about his Transforming Community® experience. I never want to be the singular person by which the people are trusting that…

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The Practice of Keeping Vigil During Holy Week

Mary Magdalene, Jesus’ mother Mary, and the apostle John stayed near the cross and kept watch as Jesus suffered and died.

Scripture for Good Friday (April 18, 2014): Isaiah 52:13-53:12; Psalm 22; Hebrews 10:16-25; John 18:1-19:42 “Who can stay awake in this night of God? Who will not be as if paralyzed by it? Christ’s struggle was with God. This was his real agony. He overcame it through his self-surrender. That was his victory, and our hope.” …

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Season of Returning: Rain at Winter’s End

Winter's end

“Look, a little cloud no bigger than a person’s hand is rising out of the sea!” —I Kings 18:44 I love the way the rain comes at winter’s end hosing down the sooty earth, washing away the dirt that comes from who-knows-where. Oh God, I need a cleansing rain in my life, sullied as I…

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Sacred Rhythms Now Available in Indonesian

Sacred Rhythms

The Transforming Center is thrilled to announce that Dr. Ruth Haley Barton’s book, Sacred Rhythms: Arranging Our Lives for Spiritual Transformation has recently been translated into its fifth language since being released in 2006 by InterVarsity Press. The book is now available in Indonesian; learn more about how to purchase the edition here. Other Transforming Resources have been translated…

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An Invitation to Walk With Christ on Good Friday

Invitation to Walk with Christ on Good Friday

Prayerfully walking through the stations of the cross is one way we can keep vigil with Christ during these holy days, and as a part of our Holy Week observance we are inviting you to keep vigil through our Stations of the Cross Prayer Guide. Traditionally, there are fourteen Stations of the Cross—most of them taken…

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Ash Wednesday: Crossing the Threshold into Lent

crucifix

Scripture for Ash Wednesday: Joel 2:1-2, 12-17 or Isaiah 58:1-12; Psalm 51:1-17; 2 Corinthians 5:20b-6:10; Matthew 6:1-6, 16-21 “‘And yet even now,’ says the Lord, ‘return to me with all your heart . . .’” —Joel 2:12  Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of the Church’s observance of the Lenten season—six weeks that are set apart for…

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Season of Returning: A Leader’s Journey into Lent

Lent

Scripture for Ash Wednesday: Joel 2:1-2, 12-17 or Isaiah 58:1-12; Psalm 51:1-17; 2 Corinthians 5:20b-6:10; Matthew 6:1-6, 16-21 “Lent is a time of returning to God.  It is a time to confess how we keep looking for joy, peace, and satisfaction in the many people and things surrounding us without really finding what we desire. …

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Presidents Day: What We Know for Sure

Prayer

“The first thing I want you to do is pray. Pray every way you know how, for everyone you know.  Pray especially for rulers and their governments to rule well so we can be quietly about our business of living simply, in humble contemplation.  This is the way our Savior God wants us to live.”…

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