I wrote the LIFE sauntering experience due to three factors in my life.
1. I have been a pastor for over four decades.
The longer I am a pastor the more I feel I don't know. So, I did not write LIFE because I have all the answers. I wrote LIFE to help people get in a position to know God's heart and to hear His voice.
My longevity in ministry has enabled me to see things that I hope can help the church in America. I believe at some point we missed the heart of God. We have become more interested in growing our churches, than in growing people. We have sacrificed relationships with Christ and with others for busy-ness in the church. We've been attempting to manufacture disciples in an Americanized fashion like we manufacture clothing, Coca Cola and cars.
It seems we have forgotten that it is by our love for one another that people will know we are His disciples. Loving someone requires building a relationship. Building a relationship is hard. Building a relationship is messy. Honestly, it's easier to do a Bible study or to plan an event.
My hope is that through this experience followers of Christ can rediscover the heart of God. Then we can return to LIFE as Jesus demonstrated. God has shown me that the church needs to return in three ways.
2. My healing experience.
As a child of nine, I was sexually abused by a neighbor next door for six months. I suffered through more than 20 years of depression. My church tradition doesn't address inner-healing. Many people in our culture and in our churches are hurting. Inner healing from painful pasts and presents needs to be addressed.
3. A recent 18-month sabbatical
In January 2018, I began an intentional time of personal reflection and self-evaluation. This time ended up stretching into eighteen months. I learned so much about myself, Christ, His church and what God is doing in these last days. Four words now describe my LIFE and ministry - Let go, Rest, Empower and Saunter.
This journey you are about to begin is more than another curriculum or a process. This journey is called a saunter for a reason. A saunter is a casual stroll. A walk with God similar to the strolls God and Adam took in the garden before the fall.
May you be refreshed as you travel on this journey. To begin, click on the link below.