Spiritual Formation and Personal Discipleship
Dr. Robert Mulholland in his book Invitation to a Journey says spiritual formation is a “process of being conformed to the image of Christ for the sake of others.” There are many scriptural references for this type of formation and transformation. In the Greatest Commandment (Matthew 22:35-40; Mark 12:28-34), Jesus reminds us that the goal of the Christian life is to love God with all we are and our neighbors as ourselves.
Paul says something similar in Romans 12:2, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds, so that you may discern what is the will of God—what is good and acceptable and perfect.”
In the Oklahoma Conference, we have a variety of ways to assist in spiritual formation and transformation for both clergy and laity.
It is incumbent on all followers of Christ to take seriously their walk with Christ and to continue to participate in both communal and personal practices which shape and form our identity and image. To facilitate that, we have created this Personal Discipleship Plan for you to use in your own life. You can also read more on this page about opportunities to deepen your walk with Christ.
Five Day Academy for Spiritual Formation
Every two years, an Upper Room Five Day Academy for Spiritual Formation is held at Canyon Camp. The leadership team, drawn from those who have completed a Two Year Academy for Spiritual Formation, work to create a wonderful experience. For more information, click here.
Walks to Emmaus
The Walk to Emmaus is an experience of Christian spiritual renewal and formation that begins with a three-day short course in Christianity. It is an opportunity to meet Jesus Christ in a new way as God’s grace and love is revealed to you through other believers.
The program is a ministry of the Upper Room. For more information, click here.
Oklahoma Emmaus communities include:
- Crosspoint (http://www.crosspointemmaus.org/)
- Great Plains (http://www.greatplainsemmaus.org/)
- Green Country (http://www.greencountryemmaus.com/)
- Northwest Oklahoma Emmaus Community Association (http://nwokemmaus.tripod.com/)
- Pioneer Country (http://pioneercountryemmaus.org.dnnmax.com/)
These websites will provide you with more information about communities in particular areas of the state.
Spiritual direction offers a way to attend to God’s presence in one’s life in the context of a trusted relationship. Spiritual Directors International states, “Spiritual direction explores a deeper relationship with the spiritual aspect of being human. Simply put, spiritual direction is helping people tell their sacred stories everyday.”
To assist in this process, many faithful Christians engage a spiritual director. United Methodist spiritual directors in Oklahoma include:
- Rev. Bob Gardenhire III, 405/204-5129, firstname.lastname@example.org (Director, HeartPaths Spirituality Centre – www.heartpathsokc.com)
- Julane Borth, 405/206-3391, email@example.com
- Rev. Judy Conner, 918-639-2647, Judy.firstname.lastname@example.org
- Deaconess Pat Hoerth, 580/917-6011, email@example.com
- Judy Horne, 405/694-0808 firstname.lastname@example.org
- Jolene Ingram, 405/948-8612 email@example.com
- Susan Kerlin, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Katrina McBride, 405/550-3951, email@example.com
- Rev. Michelle McCarty, 580/695-4775, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Christa Midkiff, 405/471-1004, email@example.com
- Rev Dawn Richards, 405/808-4407, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Rev. Linda Truitt, email@example.com
- Rev. Mark Whitley, 918-371-3250, firstname.lastname@example.org
Contact them individually for more information or to work with them as directors.