Educating imaginative, resilient leaders for God's changing world.

From Ancient Practices, New Insights

by Deedra Rich

Brian McLaren, Finding Our Way Again

 I have been reading and finding much to chew on, in Brian McLaren’s thoughtful book, “Finding Our Way Again: The Return of Ancient Practices.”

 We have several Lifelong Learning courses coming up that draw on this idea of gaining new insights from ancient practices, so – for us, and we hope for you – McLaren’s thoughts are timely.

 McLaren maintains that we need “an everyday sacredness.” We need to find ways of “restoring a kind of sacred normalcy to the rhythms of life – making prayer ordinary in our daily schedule . . . making generosity normal, normative, habitual . . . making regular time for rest every single week whether we feel we need it or not, as a matter of routine; practicing simplicity instead of consumption; countering violence with peace-making.”

 He encourages us to “derive strength from old religious traditions . . . to face new-age challenges with age-old wisdom.”

 In the coming months, the Center for Lifelong Learning offers a number of opportunities for you to discover a new rhythm to life and find everyday sacredness, by exploring ancient practices in a modern day context:

 In February and July, a new immersion course, “Immersion Experience: An Invitation to a Deeper Spiritual Life,” offers the basics: What spirituality is; an overview of monastic spirituality; Old Testament, New Testament, and Reformed spirituality.

 In February, the course, “Wisdom of the Christian Mystics,” takes a close look at – and learns from – the lives and spiritual practices and teachings of mystics – people who have had profound, life-changing experiences of the presence of God – Thomas Merton, Evelyn Underhill, Francis of Assisi, and Julian of Norwich, to name a few.

 In March, the course, “Sacred Listening: Group Spiritual Direction,” focuses on the practice and art of listening and group spiritual direction.

 In April, the course, “Living Prayer: Experiencing Prayer in Many Forms,” explores the everyday sacredness of prayer and ways to embody prayer in your everyday life.

 These are just a few of Lifelong Learning’s upcoming opportunities to enrich your spiritual life and rediscover your life’s sacred rhythm. Click here to read detailed descriptions of our upcoming events – and register for a course!