I recently had the pleasure and privilege of attending the Aprentis Institute Conference "Formation In Christ Likeness: the Process of Change" at Friends University in Wichita, KS. The speakers were fantastic, and the conference was co-sponsored by Renovare, a worldwide spiritual renewal organization that has been helping churches and individuals rediscover spiritual formation for decades. I wanted to give you a taste of the conference by including some notes and quotes from four key speakers - Scot McKnight, Dallas Willard, James Bryan Smith, and Mindy Caliguire. Please remember that these quotes were given in the context of each speaker's talk and shouldn't be taken completely on their own. I tried very hard to find quotes that would stand on their own to make it easier for you, the reader. (Mostly because you're awesome and I want you to keep reading.) To keep this from growing overly long, I'm dividing it up into two parts. Enjoy.
"Books should come from the vibrancy of your own life."
"Our culture is not an embodied culture." (We don't respond to joys or tragedies with any sort of bodily act)
"Spiritual growth is not our goal, loving God is."
"We often see in the Bible exactly what we're looking for." (Because we read what we want into it sometimes)
"We don't know exactly when the apostle Peter was converted...we see Peter being converted by the events in his life."
Experiences of God - not agreeing to the right theology - led to Peter's transformation.
"Central to spiritual transformation is embracing every person God chooses to call."
"If you love God and love your neighbor, you won't need the spiritual disciplines."
"The Good News is that the Kingdom of God is available to you RIGHT NOW."
Transformation begins when we "accept the invitation to do what Jesus does."
"'Disciple' describes the status of a person within the process of spiritual transformation."
"The spiritual disciplines bring us to associations that lift us up."
"A sure way to be miserable is to TRY to be happy."
"We have stepped into His Kingdom, and the King will take care of us."
"There is not a single problem in the church today that discipleship will not fix."
"Formation is a HUMAN problem, not just a CHRISTIAN problem."