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Showing posts from June, 2018

Discipleship: becoming one's true self

My seminary advisor was a renowned New Testament scholar, one of his protege students turned out to be Sarge Thomas' daughter, Amy, who taught one of the New Testament classes I took. Small world. Anyway, one day my advisor was talking to me about something, I don't recall what exactly. I do remember he said to me that he thought that the reason I didn't ask a lot of questions in class was because I had grown up in the Mormon church and that church doesn't encourage thinking and questioning.  No doubt I was raised to be the good girl, quiet, well behaved, and my childhood goal was perfection. However, I'm not sure if that's exactly why I was quiet in class. I suspect it had more to do with fear. I've mentioned before that Faithwalking course a number of us have taken and are taking, invites us to look deep at our lives, to ponder the things we learned about ourselves before we were 20 years old, especially the things that hurt us, shamed us, and left us fee…

How to know what I don't know that I don't know....

What are the things that I don't know that I don't know?

This is the primary question that Faithwalking asks each person to consider. And then, how can I begin to know what I don't know?

One way I can do this is to learn to listen differently. Instead of listening for only 3-9 seconds before I begin to decide what is right or wrong about what another is saying, before I begin to formulate my argument back, before my autopilot reactive response that is formed by previous wounds and hurts kicks in, I can decide instead to listen differently. I may not ever agree with what you say, but I can listen with the idea that what you are saying is true for you, and maybe I can learn something from that. At the very least I can be fully present to you and hear what you say.

At some point in time each one of us has been broken, deeply truly broken, shamed, hurt, rejected, embarrassed, neglected or abused.

Listening for right or wrong/ agree or disagree will close me off to something th…

Listening as a Way of Life

Over twenty four years ago I began a process of deep listening to God. I had a volunteer ministry in a hospital offering massages to parents of sick children. Being a licensed massage therapist was prayerful, profound work for me, that took me to places of deep listening. I listened to people. I listened to God. I listened to myself. Eventually I discerned from all this listening that I needed to do more. So I entered a dual degree program to acquire a Masters of Divinity and a Masters of Social Work, intending to be a hospital chaplain providing opportunities to guide people into deep healing of mind, body, and spirit. I had not yet decided if I was going to do this as an ordained person, that came later. It was difficult to listen to God and discern if I was called to the priesthood when I was already in seminary, surrounded by people who had already made that decision and had it affirmed by the lay committees, diocesan committees, and Bishops. Eventually I did make that decision an…