Transforming Vocation

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It was then that one of these pastors recommended I talk with the CCO about my vision and passion for reaching this group. I was intrigued by the holistic approach to ministry that the CCO uses, helping students understand that they have a very real, immediate role to play in God's reconciliation with the world. Young people were encouraged, empowered, and emboldened to transform the world.

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I was humbled and overjoyed to become part of such a marvelous ministry. Find out more about the the book. He needs nothing, but in perfect transparency speaks of being troubled — yet only so those around him who are willing to hear may know the truth. They are to be transformed, the world is to be transformed. With him there is no confusion, whatever the state of the world.

His light burns up the fogs and dispels the darkness — and we are called to be children of that light. We are called to be children of that light. Transformation is the divine response to confusion. Enabling transformation is the divine vocation of the ancient order. The vocation of the minister is transformation of all they meet, people and places. Not by their own strength but by bringing them face to face with Jesus Christ.

God’s Work Isn’t Just for Preachers! Vocation Conference to Inspire Faith in the Workplace

The vocation of the church is the transformation of the world in the power of the Spirit. We should be the true radicals, the extremists of love, the subversive underminers of inertia, those that turn the whole world upside down. In this strange role I have, a few years ago I was talking to a senior politician about extremism — as one does.

I hope everyone in this place is an extremist. That is the history of the Church at its best — transformation. That is the radicality of the vocation. For to be a child of light in a dark world, and above all to lead the children of light, will require a firm decision and a walk of ever-growing closeness to Jesus who calls us.

Even as I say those words, I think of my own walk, and I think how much I need continually to reflect on that call. To be a child of light is to lose our fear of the muddle and mess both of world and church. There is a mess. Fear drives much of our divisions and many of our scandalous arguments. Out of fear we want tidiness and clarity, and that will not happen before the return of Christ.

Tidy churches are dangerous churches. As children of light, following the pattern of Jesus, caught up by his transforming love, we know that those who are disciples will be opposed and that the good news of Jesus will be rejected by many. It means that we know that despite our sin we are forgiven.

Who here has come mourning their sins? Perhaps, who has come here not mourning their sins? Who here has come mourning their sins in everything from sex to money to power, to anything else you can think of?

Who here wishes they thirsted for Christ, desired Christ, rather than too often finding themselves desiring pleasure, rest and comfort? Who here mourns the sins of the church, of which we are a part? That would be you then, dad. As children of light we know that we are sinners.

But we know also as we look at ourselves in the light of Christ, that we are washed, and we rejoice — not for ease of forgiveness, but in awe at the cost of it and that we should be its recipients. That sense of forgiveness, of grace, must capture us and lift us into different ways of dealing with our differences, with our diversity.

The Purpose of Family

For we begin with knowing that we have been transformed, not through ourselves but through the grace of God. Radical vocation lives out the tensions of diversity and identity based in the reality that our identity is in Christ — not in what we make of ourselves or think of others — and in Christ we live in complexity, but as children of light. As children of light we know that the world is broken, and that the church always and everywhere is full of sinners; but also that the darkness cannot overcome the light we bear, nor indeed the Church that holds it.

Rick Warren: Transformed Session 7 - In my vocational health

That is the heart of the ancient order: God-given unity. The promise of cleansing. The offer of absolution. The experience shared of new creation. The confident expectation of all being made right.


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Yet fear has so often led our knowledge of the light to become self-hatred and anger — and our anxiety about the world to lead us to the exercise of power and clericalism. Triune God, your love for us places a demand on our lives; it calls us to a life of faith and love. As we explore the joy of this obligation, help us to experience your love in a new way. Hand out Bibles and read John aloud. We invite you to practice what you are learning in the room, with your group, and throughout the week in the community.

Invite each member of the group to write down the main roles that make up his or her vocation worker, parent, friend, spouse, volunteer, etc. Each participant should reflect on why he or she has each role, what he or she likes or dislikes about it, and how God is present or absent in it. Each person should find a partner and spend a few minutes sharing reflections and considering these questions:. O Lord, open my eyes that I may see the needs of others; open my ears that I may hear their cries; open my heart so that they need not be without succor; let me not be afraid to defend the weak because of the anger of the strong, nor afraid to defend the poor because of the anger of the rich.

A Physical Job

Show me where love and hope and faith are needed, and use me to bring them to those places. And so open my eyes and my ears that I may this coming day be able to do some work of peace for thee. This visual poem features Anthony Suber, a sculptor based in Houston, Texas. Anthony creates sculptures from metal, wood and found objects to tell new stories about the materials, himself and his community.

He also prompts the people who view his art to see themselves and their world with new eyes, commissioning them to live differently. Paul addresses one of the stumbling blocks for the early church in 1 Corinthians 13 -- specifically, how to love one another well when divisions between different groups become tense and hurtful. Paul calls a church that is divided over social class to treat each other with patient, kind and humble love. This kind of love provokes a new way of seeing and being in the world.

Merciful God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, much of our world, our community and our lives is in disarray. We struggle with feelings of overwhelm.

Give us a vision for your calling in our lives and how we might see our world, our community and our lives through your eyes of love. Ask your group to observe silently for a moment the provided image or something of your own choosing. Then ask:.

Invite participants to offer reflections, or prompt conversation with these questions:. Read 1 Corinthians a aloud. Invite participants to practice what they are learning in the room, as a group, and throughout the week in the community.

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Ask each person to take a selfie with his or her smartphone, and then find a partner. If a participant does not have a smartphone, make sure he or she chooses a partner who does. Post the commission you received in the small group session in a place where you will see it every day for a week bathroom mirror, cellphone lock screen, refrigerator door. It lives deep in your bones.

It abides in your heart that has been torn and mended a hundred times.