Touché   May 15, 2015
Posted on May 15, 2015 by under Discipleship, Touché,

Ridder-A Journey of Personal and Congregational Transformation

 “And in the spirit he carried me away to a great, high mountain and showed me the holy city Jerusalem coming down out of heaven from God.”  (Revelation 21:10)

I went back to the mountain this week; Hunter Mountain, where the vision of Ridder church renewal has unfolded.  This has been a two and a half year process that has affected me deeply and has led to personal transformation in my life.  I believe we are starting to see the transformation work moving into our congregation.  We had a powerful weekend after Easter as over forty people came together and took a personal look at the mental model of discipleship in their lives.

On Tuesday night consistory will begin discussion to decide if we join the process for module two.  Ridder likes to say it is not a program, it is a process and it has taken a while to see the unfolding of the vision.  I believe if you talk to our Ridder team: Colette Varanaouskas, Steve Shenkman, KC Shuster, Matt Feehan or Wes Joseph, they will tell you that they have become more excited as they have journeyed further into this process; they are unanimous in their encouragement that we continue.

The Ridder model of learning is centered on a constant movement of learning-reflection-practice that leads to mastery.  The reason why Ridder is slow in unfolding is because it is not an information “dump” that gives you a binder with three steps to follow.  It is, instead, a process that continually takes you deeper into the skill sets and core values that lead toward missional living.

These past two and half years have focused me and the team on two of the four core values and three of the five skill sets.

The Core Values we have focused on are:

  • Authenticity: being honest with God, Public, private and secret self, saying what is so without shame or fear
  • Integrity: systems design-complete and workable, keeping/honoring my word

The Skills Sets we have been introduced to are:

  • Mental Model of Discipleship: Radical Obedience, Reflective Living, Authentic Community
  • Generating/Sustaining Creative Tension: What is our current reality? What is God’s vision for our future? The art of managing conflict
  • Living Systems: Thinking systems, defining self and staying connected, living out of guiding principles, the impact of chronic anxiety

As we move further into this process, the invitation for the congregation to join in the transformation journey will open up.  We have the opportunity to join together in a Faithwalking Retreat on August 29-30 with the larger Ridder community.  More information will follow. At this point in the journey, I am deeply grateful for the way that this is shaping my ministry and the ways that it will shape the ministry at HRC.

Joyfully on the Journey,