Rough Ways

December 14, 2018

As we continue the Advent season, Jason Minnix reflects on the invitation to interior preparation to get ready for eventual peace and a return to who we really are [Luke 3:1-6].

Reflection

  • What would it look like to let go of who I think I am (unworthy, selfish, controlling, etc.) and reconnect with my deep self? (loved, compassionate, curious)
  • How can I relax into the flow of God loving me today?

Spiritual Practice

  1. Welcoming Practice.
    1. Breath deeply
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    2. Notice emotions, thoughts, body sensations & sink in.
    3. Welcome anything you notice.
    4. Let Go of having to manage any of it on your own.

    5. Become aware that everything is being held and accepted.
  2. Listen within the spaces you feel lost and empty.
    1. What is my wilderness now?  (It may be a change, good or bad, that you haven’t processed yet: someone you miss, or something you miss, maybe your body has changed. Name and acknowledge what’s hollow.)
    2. Take a minute to feel what’s there.
    3. And in this space of grief, listen, see what else is there.
  3. Receive transformation through curiosity and compassion.
    1. What emotions arise as I consider this season?

    2. Practice validating and having compassion for the presence of those emotions and thoughts.

 

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Attention

December 5, 2018

As we begin the Advent season, Gideon Tsang reflects on what we are paying attention to during this Advent season [Luke 21:29-36].

 

Reflection

  • What would you like to pay attention to in this advent season?
  • How can you slow and quiet down your life to experience God's gentle nearness?

 

Resources

 

Spiritual Practice

  1. Reflect on your season of faith.  What season of faith are you in? Meditate on the gospel of your current season (Matthew - fall, Mark -winter, John -spring, Luke - summer). Start a seasonal book club.
  2. Reflect on God’s stillness.  Create an advent sound journal.  What’s the noisiest part of your life?  How can you turn it down or hit pause?

 

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Remembering

November 30, 2018

Chris Morton reflects on how we can be intentional with our memories and how remembering God’s provision is important for our growth [Deuteronomy 6:1-9].

Reflection

  • What legacy will you chose to remember?
  • What truths do you need reminders of?
  • What story do you want to tell?

Spiritual Practice

  1. Think of something that you can remember this week of how God has provided for you.

 

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Rootedness: Fruit

November 13, 2018

Gideon Tsang finishes our vision series on Rootedness by exploring what it looks like for us to consent to rootedness and the fruit that we’ll bear [John 15:15-17].

Reflection

  • What kind of people do we want to be in 20 years?
  • What kind of fruit do we hope to produce over time?

Resources

  1. Video: Mindful Silence (Phileena Heuertz)
  2. MWG: Discussion Guide

 

Spiritual Practice

  1. Attend the new building open house.  What is your Oneing dream for Vox? How can we dissolve our illusions of separateness?
  2. Dream of a name that captures our lasting fruit.  Submit it to roots@voxveniae.com.  How can you be a part of that dream?
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Rootedness: Intimacy

November 7, 2018

Jason Minnix continues our vision series on Rootedness by exploring how being rooted in community changes our relationship with God over time [John 15:9-14].

Reflection

  1. How is God inviting the mess of who I am into love?
  2. How am I being invited into the mystery of intimacy now?

Resources

  1. Book: The Forgotten Desert Mothers (Laura Swan)

 

 

Spiritual Practice

  1. Receiving Love.  How is God inviting the mess of who I am into love? (all of my questions, doubts, suspicions, addictions, smallness, all of it)  What are the parts of my life that need a home in community? (will you bring them in slow and small ways)
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Rootedness: Forming Roots

November 1, 2018

Gideon Tsang continues our vision series on Rootedness by considering why we should be rooted with Christ and each other [John 15:4-8].

Reflection

  1. How is Christ inviting the disappointment of our exterior lives to deepen into our interior lives?
  2. What does it look like to root together with the Vox community this season?

Resources

  1. Podcast: On Being (Kevin Kelly)

 

Spiritual Practice

  1. Examine your interior and exterior life.  What disappoints you about your exterior life?  Embrace the disappointment. Receive your invitation to Christ IN you.
  2. Stake your claim in our collective soil through the new building: Ask, Donate, Volunteer

 

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Rootedness: The Vine

October 26, 2018

Jason Minix starts our vision series on Rootedness by reflecting on what it means to become more rooted to God and a spiritual community  [John 15:1-4].

Reflection

  1. How am I being invited into rootedness now?
  2. What surfaces for healing in me now as I consider rooting?

Spiritual Practice

  1. Vine Inventory.  What vines am I attached to right now? (friends, family, work, hobbies, faith community)  How much do I give to them? (physically, mentally, emotionally) Are they still meaningful to the same degree they once were?  Is it time to renegotiate my vines?
  2. Consenting to Rootedness.  What are we being invited to consent to, and where do I need to make space for healing first?  How is God being stingy to bring to beauty and meaning every detail of my story eventually? How is God joyfully wasting love on me now?

 

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Provision

October 18, 2018

Geeta Mondol shares about her recent challenges and God’s provision as she continues the work of the Ashish Centre in New Dehli, India [Luke 5:17-26].

 

Reflection

  1. What does our posture of faith and hope look like in uncertain situations?
  2. In what ways have we experienced healing into community?

 

Resources

  1. Video: Become Weaker (Jean Vanier)
  2. Video: Healed into Community (Sara Miles)

 

 

 

 

 

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Tension

October 10, 2018

Liz Schepel reflects on how we handle tension and how we relate to God in that tension? [Job 2:1-10].

 

Reflection

  1. What tensions am I holding in life right now?  How have I been relating to God as a result?
  2. What would it look like to be present with God in a non-transactional way this week?

 

Resources

    1. Podcast: On Being - Resilience After Loss (Sheryl Sandberg)

 

 

 

Spiritual Practice

  1. In times of tension, how do I approach God in a transactional way?  Is there a transactional tension that I am wrestling with right now?

 

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Grateful

October 3, 2018

Gideon Tsang reflects on how full we are of gratitude and what questions we can ask that lead us to gratitude [Psalm 103].

 

Reflection

  1. How has God healed us?
  2. How does contentment work in my life?
  3. What does it mean that God's love is steadfast and expansive?

 

Resources

  1. Video: Obama Dropping Off Malia for College

 

 

 

Spiritual Practice

  1. Consider a friend in the pit. Offer them tender mercy. Observe their experience.  Consider that’s God’s gift to our woundedness
  2. God, grant me the grace to be in the space between impulse and action.  God, grant me the space to be in the grace between impulse and action
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Place

September 27, 2018

Jason Minnix talks about how we reflect and engage the place we find ourselves and the vulnerability that it requires [Mark 9:30-37].

Reflection

  1. What or who am I struggling to accept in my journey now?
  2. How can I welcome vulnerability, both mine and those around me, this week?

Resources

  1. Video: Pink Surprised

 

Spiritual Practice

  1. Disillusionment Prayer - God I’m feeling ___ (disillusioned, hopeless, despair, exhausted, sad, angry, crushed) by ___ happening or not happening.  Please give me some support and presence this week as I process. Remind me of your acceptance, even now. Amen.
  2. Acceptance Prayer - God of acceptance, thank you for choosing me and refusing to reject me even when I reject you. Help me this week to believe you are accepting the parts of myself and others I find annoying and am embarrassed about. Show me how to accept ___ about myself this week with your compassion and gentle smile. Amen.
  3. Welcoming Prayer - Welcome, welcome, welcome.  I welcome everything that comes to me today because I know it's for my healing.  I welcome all thoughts, feelings, emotions, persons, situations, and conditions. I let go of my desire for power and control.  I let go of my desire for affection, esteem, approval and pleasure. I let go of my desire for survival and security. I let go of my desire to change any situation, condition, person or myself. I open to the love and presence of God and God's action within. Amen.

 

 

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Transforming Problems

September 19, 2018

Chris Morton reflects on how we navigate problems in our lives and how it is connected with our worship and community [John 4:1-26, 39-42].

 

Reflection

  1. Do I know what I have and don’t have to give to God?
  2. Does my worship bring life or death to myself and others?

 

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Where Does Your Help Come From?

September 14, 2018

Tim Brosnan reflects on how we interact and respond to difficult and challenging situations we experience [Psalm 146].

 

Reflection

Where have you seen God’s help break into impossible situations?

How might you posture yourself to participate in the giving and receiving of such help?

 

Resources

Video: Thai Cave Rescue

 

 

 

Spiritual Practice

Reflect on these questions in the context of your current season.  What help do I need? Where am I looking for help?

 

 

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Habits

September 4, 2018

Jason Minnix reflects on how our habits move us into healthy spiritual living with others and God and to consider whether certain habits are useful or not [Mark 7:1-8].

Reflection

  1. What habits of thinking, feeling or doing am I being invited to renegotiate?
  2. Where do I hear invitation to direct intimacy?

Resources

    1. Video: SNL Sean Spicer Press Conference

 

Spiritual Practice

  1. Name Empty Habits: What habits of thinking, feeling or doing have outlived their usefulness?  How can we begin to see them for what they are? Consider your habits that attempt to address your spiritual needs. Do they do this, or are they empty?  Begin to be curious about what’s behind them.

 

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Image of God

August 29, 2018

Sarah Berson reflects on how we are invited to put on the image of God [Ephesians 6:10-17].

Reflection

  1. Where do I need support for my gut and/or strength in resisting shame?
  2. Where do I need support for my heart, and what doubts hold me back from emotional safety?
  3. What thoughts dominate my self-talk, and how can I find strength to connect to God?

Resources

  1. Video: Best of Coyote and Roadrunner
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Discerning Heart

August 23, 2018

Jason Minnix invites us to lean into an area of our life that needs direction and how God invites us to walk in wisdom [I Kings 3:5-15].

 

Reflection

Where do I need to ask for support in order to fulfill my calling now?                                          What is something simple I can prepare a meal for this week?

 

Resources

Film: Don’t Worry, He Won’t Get Far on Foot

 

Spiritual Practice

  • Consider an area of your life that feels overwhelming or too much. Perhaps there’s something you feel inadequate to navigate on your own.  Hold out your hand with your palm open. Ask God to walk with you this week and give you wisdom in this area.
  • Host something or someone simple this week.  What’s an area within or a person in your life whose simpleness is hard to be around?  Offer what is simple the food and drink of empathy. Make room for questions that may not even have answers right now, but they are worthy of being asked.
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Get Up and Eat

August 15, 2018

Jane Patterson reflects on the the ways that God sustains us through life when the journey seems too much for us [1 Kings 19:4-8].

 

Reflection

What have you learned from experience about what truly fuels you in difficult times?

What is your experience of the dance of grace and effort in your own life? When has God surprised you with sustenance? When have you needed to "get up and eat"?

 

Resources

Instagram: lawngonefoodfarm

 

 

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A Call of Love

August 7, 2018

Matt Inman reflects on the love we have been given and are called to live from [Ephesians 4:1-16].

 

Reflection

  1. What barriers to love exist in your life currently?
  2. Who in your life is helping you grow in love?

Resources

  1. Video: Missouri vs Kansas Football
  2. Video: TED Talk - Play is Fundamental (Stuart Brown)

Spiritual Practice

  1. Does gentleness, humility or patience most resonate with you right now? Practice living one out this week, and when you fail, double down on living it out for yourself all the more.
  2. Consider who your rivals are and what is so threatening about them to you. How does this kind of hate create a barrier to allowing love to come in and go out in you life?
  3. Consider what growth and maturity look like to you. Does it make space for you to play?  Is there one way you carry yourself physically that is too rigid, too serious or closed off that doesn’t accurately communicate the love you have for others?
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To the Ecotone of Authenticity

August 1, 2018

Marlon Hall facilitates an ecological conversation about diversity and reflects on the invitation towards cross-pollination and authenticity [Genesis 1:1-3].

 

Reflection

  1. What if the gritty spaces we are socially and racially in are an invitation to grow a new culture?
  2. Is diversity an end or a means to the end of a new cultural authenticity?

 

Resources

  1. Folklore Films

 

 

 

Spiritual Practice

  1. Meet with someone different from you this week to hear their story and find your story in theirs.
  2. Journal on the privileges that you have and experience.
  3. Pursue friendship with someone who is different from you.
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Compassion

July 25, 2018

Jason Minnix reflects on the way Jesus lived out compassion and what that means for how we show compassion in our lives [Mark 6:30-34, 53-56].

Reflection

  1. What are some of my needs that I am being invited to care for this week?
  2. Who am I being invited to shift from empathy to compassion for?

Resources

  1. Film: Eighth Grade

 

Spiritual Practice

  1. Practicing solitude and ease.  Move into a solitary space and find some ease this week.  What or where is my solitary space now? What is my process of entering into ease?
  2. Practicing compassion.  Where do I need guidance today? Where do I need to trust my Self (image of God) more?  Where am I being invited to move from pity or empathy to compassion? With whom do I need to practice trusting they everything they need for healing?
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