Tuesday, 25 August 2009

Grace and Truth - An Away Day with Rick Lewis.

Hi folks below are a few photos of the Mentoring Awayday I recently attended with a group of friends at at Bawtry Hall, also some notes i took of the day.
I hope you enjoy this blog and loook forward to your responses.

Grace and Truth
Just recently my wife and I sandy poppins, joined up with quite a few of our friends at Northern Connections at bawtryhall for a conference on Mentoring with a guy named Dr. Rick Lewis from Australia.
Rick is currently pastor of Castle Hill Community church in Sydney, Australia, and has a new book out called Mentoring Matters.
Rick also has a website which is very useful called, Mentoring Matters

We began the day with worship and prayer and our host Jonathan Dunning introduced Rick who skilfully guided us through the rest of the day.

The following notes are what I sketched down, hopefully they will refresh peoples' memories of the day who attended and for those who didn’t, well, enjoy and I would welcome comments from both parties, have fun and be blessed.

Our opening passage and indeed theme for the day was,
Jesus; full of Grace & Truth.

Session 1:

We read the following passage:

14The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
15John testifies concerning him. He cries out, saying, "This was he of whom I said, 'He who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me.' " 16From the fullness of his grace we have all received one blessing after another. 17For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18No one has ever seen God, but God the One and Only, who is at the Father's side, has made him known.
Grace & Truth both needed in the same measure!

From a theological foundation we need to see that Jesus presents himself to us and others as;

1. The revelation of the Character and nature of God.
2. Full of Grace & Truth

We need the character of Christ to live ‘in us’ and ‘through us’.

A word about the ‘Law’ – Law is a coercive power; Law is about compliance, judgment.

The hallmark of a leader is to lead with Grace & Truth. (Together)

Looking at several gospel narratives we began the conversation with Rick at the helm.

1. The woman at the well. John 4: 1 - 26
2. The Tax Collector. Luke 19: 1 - 10
3. Peter’s confession you are the Christ Matthew 16: 13 - 20
4. The woman caught in adultery.

A few of my thoughts from the discussion;

  • Grace enables you to accept the Truth

  • Grace opens the door to Truth

  • Is there real truth without Grace?

  • Grace and Truth are expressions of God’s love.

    Session 2.

    Question? How was Jesus full of Grace and Truth?

    Close your eyes and ponder these thoughts anew.

  • Grace in Actions? Or vice versa?
    Actions in Grace?

  • Truth in Actions? Or vice versa?
    Actions in Truth?

Grace and truth are FUNCTIONAL AND POSITIONAL Characteristics of Jesus.

A conversation progressed about functional and positional aspects of leadership, Grace and Truth.

What do you think?

Session 3.

Coercive Power

A great session around power, with contributions from many people, it was great to see, how we using what we have been taught in the previous sessions and put into place aspects of Grace and Truth when speaking about power.

  • The POWER within is OK!

  • The POWER OVER is the PROBLEM!

    Quote: If a Mentor is truly expressing love toward a Mentoree, they will not attempt to wield power over them. Dr R. Lewis. Mentoring Matters. 2009. Monarch books.

    If you constrain people against their will you are wrong, what is required is a change of HEART, not external compliance.

    2 Timothy 2: 24. And the Lord's servant must not quarrel; instead, he must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful. 25Those who oppose him he must gently instruct, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth,

    Paul knew that effecting a change of behaviour through coercive power is worthless, for it does not change the heart.

    Rick says; "It is helpful for a Mentor to minimize the sources of power over Mentorees. I have noted that the accrual of power to the mentors stems from either personal power or positional power"

    Quote: Where love rules, there is no will to power, and where power predominates, there love is lacking. The one shadows the other. Carl Jung.

    Throughout the day we had plenty of time to chat with each other and also walk around the gardens at Bawtry Hall, I would like to thank Jonathon Dunning for organising the day and a special thank you to Rick for sharing his heart with us.

    Hope you enjoy the blog and look forward to your comments, once again sorry for delay in this post.

Monday, 10 August 2009

A Few Quotes

Hi folks,

I'm busy reading The Ragamuffin Gospel, by Brennan Manning, an excellent book.

these quotes come from chapter 2; Magnificent Monotony.

Julian of Norwich; "The greatest honor we can give the Almighty God is to live gladly because of the knowledge of his love."

Jacques Martain; "The culmination of knowledge is not conceptual but experiential."

Ignatuis of Loyola; " The direct experience of God is Grace indeed, and basically there is no one to whom it is refused."

3 quotes that Brennan then goes onto to expand, you'll have to read the book to find out more!

But what strikes me more and more as I journey with God is that we experience this Grace at first however slowly but surely let the Law replaces it as we get travel weary.

My prayer therefore more than ever is that I (We) experience God's Grace daily in our lives.

Just recently whilst speaking about Grace at a friends church I was overwhelmed with "This Grace" as I was speaking, It disarmed me and I thank God that I experienced the transformation as I spoke, in addition those listening responed to the message and numerous Grace transactions occured. He truly is wonderful.

The Psalmist says "Be Still and Know" friends today take timeout to know "This Grace" that surpasses all understanding, its well worth it.