How do you stay spiritually healthy? Stay in the game? Make sure you finish well? That was the focus of week 3 of the Leader’s Soul online class that I am taking as part of the LIFT Project. Week 3 featured 3 videos that we watched online together as well as the interaction in answering questions, adding comments, giving input as we all seek to replenish the soul of our leadership.
Mindy Caliguire was joined in the 3 videos with Lance Witt of Replenish Ministries. Replenish is exactly what happened in this week’s class.
Video 1: 6 Core Spiritual Practices
1) Helping people understanding various forms of prayer language as part of the nature of my relationship with God.
2) Use of Scripture. Lectio divina (divine reading), for example, is a great way to engage the Word in living life.
3) Spiritual Friends. They mentioned this one gets left off most lists. I thought at this point they were able to look through the computer and over my shoulder. I know it’s important, just don’t usually list spiritual friends as part of a spiritual practice. I will now. You should too!
4) Solitude. This is one I have learned to value the last 5 years. Taking a day a month to spend time alone with God, makes the rest of my days more productive, more focused.
5) Soul searching, often referred to as “examen” by the early church fathers. As Psalm 139:1 says, You have searched me, Lord, and you know me.
6) Simplicity. Lots of different versions of understanding what this means as a spiritual practice. In this course, Biblical simplicity is not about making life more manageable nor is it the easier path (both of what I thought before the class). Biblical simplicity is the idea of focus. The enemy of Biblical simplicity is not complexity, but duplicity. Another Aha moment for me in the class!
Video 2: Focus on 4 Spiritual Practices Coming Up or the Next 4 Weeks of the Course. (what you and I can look forward to the next 4 Mondays)
1) Prayer, specifically the daily prayer of surrender. That’s not giving up, but giving over my life over to God.
2) Journalling — a way of prayer as well as soul searching. The goal is to bring myself to self-awareness. What God knows from Psalm 139:1, I pray He reveals in my heart and life.
3) Solitude. We already have been given a head’s up to block out time for this practice. What usually stops us (me) from solitude is not making time for it, even worse not making time to be alone with God.
4) Simplicity. This one excites me the most.
Video 3: Enemy of a Healthy Soul for a Leader is Pace of Life.
You might think this simply dealt with busy schedules, but even more it is ambition. Is my leadership path more about God and His purposes of life (that would be a healthy path) or my need to feel validated and successful (that would be an unhealthy path).
God wires us with:
1) Fire in the belly — All part of the doing side of one’s life. Think the power of electricity within in you.
2) Need for a healthy soul — All part of the being side of one’s life. Think the transformer to manage that electrical power.
Then come one of my favorite quotes (and I love great quotes). This one is from Thomas Kelly, “How slick and weasel like is self-pride.” Left me feeling a little weaselly, but at least self-aware of my need for a Savior.
As a wrap up to this third video, Lance gave this image for church leaders to contemplate. The Biblical image is the church as the Bride of Christ, and Jesus as the Groom. In that Biblical scenario, the focus is on the groom, not the bride. The church’s job as the bride is to focus on the groom. Then Lance focused it a bit more for church leaders. I’m not the bride. I’m not the groom. My role is the wedding coordinator, I connect people to Jesus and to His bride.
In between the 3 videos, there were questions for not only further reflection but class input. Mindy Caliguire our lead instructor and Mike Calacci our facilitator also joined in the conversation. Here are 2 of my favorite questions they asked that I’d love your input on as well:
1) Is there someone in your ministry experience that you observed to lead from a healthy soul?
2) How would you imagined that soul health impacted their leadership?
The Leader’s Soul continues to be a great online class and experience. You can register for the next class that starts on June 11 here.