Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Living God's Love - Conversation Six

RENOVARÉ, which is holding an International Conference addressing the theme of Spiritual Formation and Scripture June 19-22, 2005, "The With-God Life: The Dynamics of Scripture for Christian Spiritual Trans^Formation" will address the role of Scripture in the formation of Christlikeness in the heart, soul, mind, and strength.

That is also the subject of Gary Holloway's and Earl Lavender's book that I am writing about chapter by chapter in this blog. More specifically, chapter four discusses how to listen for God's voice through meditative reading called lectio divina, "holy reading." In a later article, we will be describing lectio divina in more detail, but here is what RENOVARÉ recently said in an email about their upcoming conference, and it fits here:
For many the spiritual formation view of Scripture comes quite natural. And yet, as we reflect on the Church, it is likely our primary view of Scripture has been formed in one of three ways:
  • Apocalyptic - The Bible primarily as a resource for End Times concerns.
  • John 3:16 - The Bible primarily as a resource for personal salvation.
  • Historical Critical - The Bible primarily as a text to be subjected to scientific method.

    While each of these views of Scripture can be beneficial, a Spiritual Formation view of Scripture is quite different. Seeing the Bible from this view encourages us in our daily formation in the likeness of Christ, informing in and forming us for holiness.
  • This week I am meditating on John 15, The Vine. Each day I will share with you what I am doing. First, I want to quiet my mind and heart, to be still and ready myself to hear and read. Second, I read the passage slowly, letting the words soak in. Next steps I'll tell you about tomorrow along with some reflections on the passage. One overall goal is to no longer stand above Scripture as mentioned above, trying to look for ways I can preach it or shape it to my point or particular bent such as historical critical concerns but to seek to be shaped by it.

    Scripture and God's authority stands over me, and I am shaped by Scripture, by his voice, by his "Spirit of truth" (John 14:17). More and more I'm finding that Spirit of truth is not about exact beliefs but pure faith in the person of Jesus Christ, God the father, and the Spirit longing to dwell in me and shape me into the image of Christ.

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