Grace Institute News

December 28, 2011

removing the "something else's"    

It's almost a new year. It's the time when many people sit down and make resolutions about what they will change and what they will add in the new year. Often the decisions are made out of a frustration they have with their current life. So what happens when there is not a lot of frustration with our current situation? Should we take time to reflect, take inventory, and make changes?

Maybe the better question is, why wouldn't we? God asks us to be committed. Completely committed. Doesn't that imply that we constantly evaluate, make tweaks, sometimes even make big shifts to follow where God is leading us? Paul uses words like "pressing on," "taking hold," "running the race." Not only do those imply a forward movement, they imply preparation time. We can't run a race that we haven't trained for, we can't climb or press forward unless we've done some preliminary work. Right?

We've noticed in our own congregation (yep, this is confession time), that the drive to improve and change is many times overridden by something else that keeps things the same. The "something else" is not the same for everyone. Sometimes it's a fear of the new, sometimes it's a love of the familiar, sometimes it's the dread of change, sometimes it's an unclear sense of where to go.  That's our job. To help people grab onto what it is God is calling us to do and be so enthused with God's call that "something else" that would normally stall a movement forward gets left behind.

There is no way to lead people into God's call without some time to reflect, feel God's call, and be empowered and impassioned to follow. First, we as leaders need to take some time (following in the footsteps of Abraham, Jacob, David, Samuel, Jesus, Paul...). Once we've heard God, we can then lead our leaders, and then our congregation, into a time of listening and evaluating next steps.

We're leading our leaders through a discernment process in January. We'd love to help you lead yours through something similar. It's an exciting time for the church. We want to hear God's call and be ready. Do you? Let us know how we can help you make 2012 the year to remember.
lunch and learn
New Lunch and Learn starting January 5!

Filling Up the Tanks*

watch it any time:


*Advent can be wonderful...and draining. As we start the new year, we're going to focus on how to be "be all we can be" to use a famous phrase, in our personal lives and as leaders in our church. January lunch and learn will focus on how to fill up your tanks, learn some habits that can help you sustain your energy as you move from Christmas to Lent, and be a good steward of your body. It will be followed by Part 2 in February that will focus on being the kind of leader God is calling you to be. Join us. Each video will start on the 1st Thursday of the month and be available all the time until the next one starts. 

December Lunch and Learn is still available every day, all the time


Have you watched the video yet?

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Michelle Jenks

Grace Institute

2770 Montgomery Rd

Aurora, IL 60504