Welcome to The Flourishing Culture Podcast! How does a busy Christian leader – with a full plate of responsibilities and activities – maintain an abundant spiritual life so they can effectively lead from that place?
Listen to the Audio
Today, Al is talking with Dr. Ruth Haley Barton, the founder of the Transforming Center located in Wheaton, IL. Ruth is a seasoned spiritual director, teacher and retreat leader. She has served on the pastoral staff of several churches, including Willow Creek. She is a professor of Spiritual Transformation at Northern Seminary, and the author of several spiritual formation books and resources.
Tune in to this illuminating, important and deeply rich conversation, as Al and Ruth discuss the dangers of living out of our false, untransformed selves, and how to cultivate spiritual rhythms to draw us into the presence of God.
The most important thing we bring to leadership is not our skills and talents, but our own transformed selves.
In this episode, you’ll learn about:
- Why personal transformation and spiritual growth is critical to your organization’s health
- Why a leader’s personal dysfunctions are damaging to the whole organization
- Ruth’s own personal experience with becoming spiritually depleted
- Indicators to watch for in your own life when something is not right at the soul level
- How to move toward a place of integration in soul and work
- The need for community outside of our work environment – spiritual friends who care about our souls, not our ministry outcomes
Spiritual Practices to Transform Our Souls
- Solitude: silence, scripture, discernment, journaling, self-examination
- Community: listening to corporate teaching, engaging in worship, serving one another with gifts
- The World: external ministry, serving the poor, justice
- Daily: Give your best time of the day to God. Whenever you feel most awake, alive and alert, listen for God through silence, solitude, Scripture and prayer.
- Weekly: We have 5 days for paid work, a 6th day for your human needs, and a 7th day for Sabbath rest. Make one day your Sabbath and keep it faithfully.
- Monthly or Quarterly: Take a personal retreat in which you pay attention to what is going on inside and allow God to replenish and nourish you in the process.
- Annually: Take all your allotted vacation, and consider an extended time that leaves work behind and allows you to pursue your deeper life with God.
Explore Additional Resources
- Learn more about the Transforming Center: transformingcenter.org
- Find the Transforming Center on Facebook and Twitter
- The Transforming Community, Ruth’s immersive retreat experience
- Al and Ruth discuss the Enneagram
- Dive into Ruth’s books:
Read the Transcript
Download a complete, word-for-word transcript of the episode here.
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