Students blog about their experience with Fuller’s new emphasis on holistic formation—starting with the Touchstone course on vocation and continuing through courses on spiritual and missional practices.
Wow, week nine and I am still here. Money, my vocation and my last Vocation/Formation group – boo hoo. I will miss this community we have made. I have relied on you to listen without judgment and advise with love, and that you have done wonderfully.
Our final VF gathering was similar to our first, in that we remembered a time where the Spirit of Jesus was near. For me, this was most profoundly during a phone call with our DOOR (Discovering Opportunities for Outreach and Reflection) Hollywood Associate Director, Marvin. He is black, I am white, or as my daughter says, brown and orangish-pink.
When I applied to Fuller I was asked to answer the Central Integration Question which asks: “At this point in your Christian journey, how do you envision your call to God's mission in the world?” I answered the question initially (back in October, 2014) with the big picture dream in mind...
The past few weeks have been a whirlwind for me. The first part of the quarter was busy but manageable. Then "wham" just like that, my world went topsy-turvy! It feels like life is running further and further away and I'm trailing behind, running in place. While I want to be frustrated, I realize that the signals were there all along.
Christine Pohl said something in a Touchstone video that seems obvious yet needs mentioning as a reminder. She spoke about God’s welcome to us, His hospitality which should move us to welcome strangers. Fuller’s campus is a great place to do this in a safe environment to start.
8:30 pm: Our Vocation and Formation team practiced the prayer of Examen, an Ignatian practice that involves both celebrating our gratitude towards God and crying out in complaint: the harmonics of praise and lament.
In week five of the Touchstone Course we were asked to watch a video entitled “The Practice of Examen,” in which Laura Harbert presented the Prayer of Examen. The Prayer of Examen consists of five central parts: invite God’s presence, express gratitude, ask the Holy Spirit to give discernment, review good and bad parts of the day, and confess.
Change is difficult. Anyone who has ever tried to implement change in a church or institution could tell you that most people are immune to it. We assume that people resist change because they are lazy. “If only people tried harder, then change would come easy” so the argument goes. Dr. Bolsinger, however, challenged this assumption in our most recent Touchstone class...
At our first Vocation and Formation group meeting, I experienced the living Christ with a vibrancy I had never noticed before. After a rich, albeit short, testimony sharing practice between the 9 of us, our leader ushered us into a meditative time. In some ways, it was like any meditation I’ve ever practiced: get comfortable, close your eyes, focus on your breath….until she asked us to imagine Jesus alongside us...
I'm excited to be writing my first blog post - ever! I'm humbled by the opportunity to share my experiences in the Touchstone Course. I hope that it will be refreshing and as encouraging for you, as I know writing it will be for me. I embarked on this quarter returning after a two-year break as my husband and I welcomed our first child into the world. The Touchstone Course is my first class after the break, and in the redesigned MDiv program, so I offer my perspective from that of both a new and returning student.