A Good Gift: Experiencing Transformation in Community

Continuing the story of Transforming CommunityThe launch of Transforming Community 3 marked significant growth in the number of participants but also in the experience itself. With 40 people on retreat–including six Christian Reformed Church pastors who came together from Michigan on a Lilly grant!– it was time to create a small serving team that could better facilitate the needs of a larger group. Rory Noland, stepped up to become our worship leader, adding music to our fixed hour prayer services for the first time. His original compositions contributed to the further development of Transforming Center’s own unique worship experience, which continues to bind each community together. As we look back, we notice that several from this community went on to serve sacrificially over the years in staff, board, and other key roles.

The Transforming Community exists to create space for God to meet us exactly where we are and minister to us in the ways we most need. This means that no community experience can ever be had twice!  

A Good Gift from God

I’m grateful to share a few reflections about how God used the Transforming Center in my own ongoing formation story. As I write this, I am preparing to unplug and “go off the grid” for 48 hours after sending this email!

The yearning for regular times of silence and solitude to draw near to God began during my participation in TC 3. Those two years were an inflection point in my story which begins with this statement, “I can never remember not being a follower of Jesus.” But even having been conspicuously blessed in my personal heritage, I had never been exposed to the richness of the spiritual disciplines, especially when experienced in community with the beautiful rhythm of prayer, rich dialogue and worship.

Since my time in community, I have been involved in regular spiritual retreats, both personal and in community, with an ever growing yearning for how I can live consistently in ways that make God smile. Those two years with Transforming Community a decade ago are a gift I will always count as one of God’s great mercies in my life.

As part of our 15-year anniversary celebration we are sharing stories and testimonies from each completed Transforming Community to celebrate all the Lord has done. We hope these stories will inspire you to continue to go deeper in your relationship with God, draw you into celebration of all the Lord has done, and encourage you to partner with us in all He has yet to do!

Read more stories of Transformation from TC3

© 2017 Sc0tt Bolinder

Scott Bolinder

was a member of Transforming Community 3. He recently retired from Biblica, capping off a 37-year career in Christian publishing where he served in executive roles at Christianity Today, Zondervan, and Biblica. He is a founding director of the Institute for Bible Reading and serves on several non-profit boards.
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