CrossPoint’s mission is to care for the soul of Christian leaders. All of our efforts focus on nurturing the souls of leaders and training others to do the same. To that end the blog posts this month will give insight as to how we cultivate soul care for leaders.
I have the privilege of introducing (or reminding) you of ‘The Leader’s Journey’. It is a 12 retreat experience where we go to a church staff (or the staff from multiple churches in a city) once each quarter for three years. During the day-long retreat held either on-site at the church or off-site at a retreat center we cover at least three things.
First, we emphasize a spiritual discipline that will help leaders stay grounded in their identity in Christ. Second, we address the biblical and theological reasons for engaging in a particular discipline. And third, we explore the psychological reasons for the spiritual discipline.
Here is an example of what we do. At the second retreat the discipline we emphasize is Contemplative Reading of Scripture. We explain what it is and how to do it. We also practice it during our day together. We will give the Scriptural reasons to come with an listening ear to Scripture (e.g. to ground ourselves in who we are in Christ) and the benefits that flow from doing that (e.g. not being overwhelmed with the pressing issues of life and ministry). We will also explore pressures that typically keep us from engaging as well as the psychological reality of the two ways of knowing that God created in us. There is ‘explicit’ knowing (all the things we learned by paying attention) and ‘implicit’ knowing (all the thing we learned while not paying attention). Contemplative Reading is one of the ways the Holy Spirit brings to the surface and changes our ‘implicit’ memories. That is important because it is our unconscious world that has the most impact in how we go about our relationships. And that is crucial because Jesus said it all boils down to loving God and our neighbor as ouselves (a very relational endeavor).
The benefit to the staff of engaging The Leader’s Journey is that it provides the opportunity to increase their relational capacity. It will help them love people and their work from a more solid place within their souls. It will deepen their affection and devotion to God. It will strengthen their identity in Christ. It will help keep them from burnout or blow out.
Check out the topics of the 12 retreats at crosspointministry.com/welcome/what-we-do/retreats/leaders-journey. Contact us if you have questions (firstname.lastname@example.org). We would count it a privilege to lead the staff of your church or Christian organization through this vital experience.