Season 2: Episode 9 | You are Witnesses of these Things

September 13, 2017

As we conclude season two, the disciples on the Emmaus Road are so excited about what has happened in and through their encounter with Jesus on the Emmaus Road that they jump up from dinner and turn right around to go back to Jerusalem to share what has happened with the other disciples. The trauma of all they had been through has been redeemed and their spiritual journey now leads them to discern the mission Jesus has for them.  Ruth and Steve discuss the creative tension in the spiritual life between mission and formation. Steve offers us an advice freebie and Ruth brings the season to a close by highlighting how mission cannot be discerned or sustained apart from commitment to an ongoing process of spiritual transformation.

 

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Season 2: Episode 8 | Discerning the Presence of Christ

September 6, 2017

Ever had a conversation you wish didn’t have to end? The two disciples were so stirred by their conversation that “they urged Jesus strongly to stay.” And it was in the staying that the disciples recognized Jesus’ transforming presence as they shared a meal together. The practice of stability is not a strength of western Protestantism, but are we missing something when we are so quick to walk away. What is the essence of a transforming community? Listen to episode 8 and discover the heart of spiritual community.

 

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Season 2: Episode 7 | Finding Our Story in HIS Story

August 30, 2017

Jesus is on a roll now—helping the disciples on the Emmaus Road to see their story and what felt so personal to them as part of the larger story of what God has been doing down through history.  What makes the human journey really exciting is being able to understand our own story in light of the bigger picture of what God is doing. Are there places where we shouldn’t do what Jesus did? Find out in episode 7. Also included is a rich discussion of the Word and the role of mystery in Scripture.  

 

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Season 2: Episode 6 | The Nature of the Spiritual Journey

August 23, 2017

Jesus listened long enough to the disciples on the Emmaus Road to offer a spiritual perspective on the hardest experiences of life. In this conversation, Ruth and Steve discuss the role of suffering in the Christian journey and how we need to normalize suffering so we can claim its fruitful role in the spiritual life. Ruth highlights the stages of the spiritual journey and how transforming communities need to have resources to meet people at all of these stages.

 

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Season 2: Episode 5 | Men and Women in Community

August 16, 2017

If you read the Emmaus Road conversation carefully in Luke 24, you will notice that part of the story the disciples told Jesus was that “the women of our group astounded us” with news of the Resurrection on that first Easter morning. Ruth unpacks the countercultural approach Jesus took to the role of women and men in Jesus’ life and ministry. Ruth and Steve speak candidly about how discrimination on the basis of gender happens even in settings that affirm the equality of men and women. They also acknowledge the sparks that can be present when women and men are together and Ruth highlights how the person we are is what helps us navigate sexual dynamics safely—not whether or not we choose to be in a car or a meeting alone with a person of the other gender! A great conversation that offers a healthy vision of men and woman in partnership—in life and ministry.

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Season 2: Episode 4 | Gathering on the Basis of Shared Desire

August 9, 2017

In their conversation on the Emmaus Road, Jesus created a safe space for the disciples to share their deepest desire. Getting in touch with our deepest desire is like peeling an onion—there are many layers, and getting to the center might leave you in a pool of tears. Listen to a great conversation about how to cultivate communities where people are safe enough with each other to name their deepest desires. In doing so, people can then support each other in arranging their lives for what they say they truly want. This is a great episode for leaders who need a safe place to name their own desires. Psalm 37 anchors this episode.

 

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Season 2: Episode 3 | Choosing to Listen Rather than Fix

August 2, 2017

Continuing the story of the Emmaus Road, Jesus plays dumb and models what spiritual companionship can look like. How do we become the kind of person who can listen rather than fix, and stand still being sad rather than rushing in with our own advice? In episode 3, we discover some great questions that can help us be better spiritual companions. Some great thoughts for leaders even if you don’t use a toolbox! The episode ends with a beautiful prayer; we hope you can pull over to the side of the road, stop what you’re doing, find a quiet spot and join us.

 

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Season 2: Episode 2 | Welcoming the Stranger

July 26, 2017

Jesus wants to be in your juicy conversations. Just think about it—the Emmaus Road encounter would not have happened had the disciples not welcomed “the stranger” on their journey home. Welcoming the other’s experience and story are integral to the idea of welcoming the stranger. In episode 2, Ruth shares a story of how welcoming the other created a transforming community experience. What will you miss when you don’t welcome the stranger? The polarization of our culture is so acute, that the practice of learning how to recognize and welcome the stranger is more crucial than ever. Let’s make the radical choice to walk with others and discover how Jesus will meet us there!

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Season 2: Episode 1 | Choosing to Walk Together

July 19, 2017

Life Together in Christ: Cultivating Communities for Spiritual Transformation

Many of us are carrying a lot of baggage regarding Christian community.  Ruth has often commented that it is one of the most over-promised, under-delivered aspects of the Christian life—which means that Christians who have been deeply involved in church are often the most cynical and disillusioned. In Season 2 of the Strengthening the Soul of Your Leadership podcast, Ruth and Steve will discuss how to cultivate communities where people regularly and routinely experience spiritual transformation. In episode 1, Ruth shares how God led her to the story of the Emmaus Road as a biblical model for transforming community. She unpacks the three nuanced ways of talking about community: Christian community, spiritual community, and transforming community, and also describes what Christian community is not—with a rich discussion of the role community plays in navigating liminal space. 

In this podcast:

Episode 6 | Transformation Through Self-Knowledge and Self-Examination

Life Together in Christ: Experiencing Transformation in Community by Ruth Haley Barton

Sacred Rhythms: Arranging Our Lives for Spiritual Transformation (Chapter 6) by Ruth Haley Barton

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Episode 9 | A Rule of Life: Arranging Our Lives for Spiritual Transformation

May 17, 2017

The final episode of Season 1: Sacred Rhythms in the Life of the Leader. Ruth and Steve wrap up season 1 with a lively discussion of how to put it all together in your own sacred rhythms. Ruth confesses her true feelings about rules before she defines a rule of life and shares why it is so important for leaders to have one. Do you put sabbath keeping in the too hard file?  Ruth did until she got run over by a car! Ruth’s final words of season 1 will launch you on a great new journey!

Mentioned in the podcast:

Sabbath: Finding Rest, Renewal, and Delight in Our Busy Lives by Wayne Mueller

Transforming Center

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