Working with a Spiritual Director: A Transformative Experience

Martha RockensteinSpiritual Practices

Many Christian Educators and pastors move through their ministry on automatic. They keep on doing what they are doing and probably doing it adequately. However, there usually comes a time when they start running on empty, when they feel like they are losing themselves in their ministry, have lost their identity as a child of God, or are just plain stuck. Several years ago I was at that point. I felt “stuck” and far from … Read More

How to Foster Seamless Faith

Traci SmithSpiritual Practices

When I teach parents how to incorporate spiritual practice into their family routine, I stress this truth: Faith is learned when it’s woven seamlessly into the fabric of our everyday lives. The idea is that faith practices that have lasting impact are incorporated into daily life effortlessly. Of course, things that appear effortless in our lives are often things that we’ve nurtured through deliberate practice and patience. I’m committed to helping families develop meaningful faith … Read More

Spiritual Practices for Congregations

Lynne BaabSpiritual Practices

After church on Sunday, a family prays together for the upcoming week. A small group sets aside a day to fast and pray for one of their members who has cancer. A congregation buys copies of a Lenten devotional so everyone can spend time each day reading a Bible passage and pondering the meaning of the events that lead up to Easter. Increasingly, groups of people–families, small groups, and congregations– are taking part in communal … Read More

A Message from the President

Von ClemansSpiritual Practices

In his classic book The Celebration of Discipline, Richard Foster says, “The desperate need today is not for a greater number of intelligent people, or gifted people, but for deep people.” Our calling as educators can lead us at times to focus on increasing the intelligence of those in our pews and classrooms. We also focus on building their gifts. But if the result is only surface change, we have missed out on the challenge … Read More

Eyes to See and Ears to Hear

Jill DuffieldSpiritual Practices

Recognizing God right in front of us can be a challenge. Jesus, seemingly irritated with the disciples, asks, “Do you have eyes, and fail to see? Do you have ears, and faith to hear? And do you not remember?” (Mark 8:18) The risen Christ’s refrain to the seven churches in Revelation repeats that message: “Let anyone who has an ear listen to what the Spirit is saying to the churches.” Seeing the work of God … Read More

Photography as a Spiritual Practice

Susan E. MoorefieldSpiritual Practices

In the world of Instagram and selfies, it is hard to imagine that photography could even be suggested as a spiritual practice. Everywhere you go, smart phones are photographing everything from a foot-long chili dog at the ballpark to a squirrel wearing a pink dress. When phones are not photographing other things, they are often turned on their owners to snap the latest tattoos, pretty drinks, or famous celebrities nearby. On his visit to the … Read More