The Journey of Spiritual Formation

Click here to view this newsletter as a PDF.


Hi friends. As you may have noticed if you’ve read these newsletters in the past, most of the subject matter of my writings here have been related to events and happenings of the NAB Gateway ministry that I direct.

But as I considered how the Father has been working in me (and my ministry) in recent times, I realized that I can’t ignore and need to communicate to you how important my current focus on my own spiritual formation has been to me of late. To be honest, I, like many other Christian leaders I know, spend a lot of time reading, training, and trying to understand the God of Mission more fully and how we can serve together with Him for His Kingdom purposes. But it was pointed out to me that many, if not most, Christian leaders like myself go through their entire ministry without ever doing the crucial work of discovering what’s known as Double Knowledge: knowledge of God and knowledge of self. They have “falsely equated Christian maturity with a sort of self-actualizing journey; or on the other extreme, they have reduced their ‘growing up into Christ’ into a ‘heady’ exercise that equates biblical I.Q. with genuine sanctification” – Vantage Point 3 Team; (I’d say the latter has been my experience).

Considering this, I took the opportunity to be a part of ‘The Journey’—a Vantage Point 3 Process with a group from my church and it has really transformed much of how I’ve looked at my ‘story’ and the Father’s careful strides right alongside of me. Additionally, I’ve also been challenged recently in regards to my authenticity and transparency during my time with the NAB ‘Blue Ocean’ cohorts both last year and this year. Originally, I saw Blue Ocean as a chance to connect with a number of NAB pastors in one setting (3x a year), which it is; but it seems that the Spirit had other purposes in mind for me as well as I’ve walked with these 2 cohort groups. Purposes that have helped me walk with these NAB pastors in being authentic, transparent leaders on mission.

I think the Father is helping me to understand and know myself better and to know Him better at the same time through these opportunities. And of course, to be able to lead a ministry like NAB Gateway from a place of better understanding like this is invaluable. As Julian of Norwich said some 7 centuries ago, “we can never come to the full knowledge of God until we first clearly know our own soul.”

Wherever you find yourself on your walk with the Father, as a leader or as a disciple, I’d challenge you to consider as I did whether or not you’ve done this crucial work of ‘Spiritual Formation’ – to pursue and know who you are as a son/daughter of the Father.

For the Kingdom, Randy Schmor