Resurgence roundup, 5/24/13
Fri May 24, 2013
The places grace empowers us
Thu May 23, 2013
by Justin Holcomb
‘Each next risk is the biggest one’: James MacDonald talks with Mark Driscoll
Wed May 22, 2013
by Mark Driscoll
Tue May 21, 2013
by Amanda Edmondson
From prison to ReTrain: Russell’s story
Mon May 20, 2013
How Re:Train Messed with My Identity
What in the world am I doing? This was the thought that ran through my head as I made my way through the Canadian wilderness.
A few days earlier, I had put my wife and daughters on a plane to Seattle before driving down with our possessions in tow. I believed that God had spoken to my heart, called me to move to leave my hometown of Anchorage, Alaska, and go through Re:Train, but somewhere deep in the Yukon Territory, I began to wonder if I had heard him correctly.
I have been involved in ministry since I was a kid. My dad has served as a pastor and my mom is a worship leader, so I have quite literally grown up in church. While there are many wonderful things that come from growing up in that environment, there was a problem: I had built my whole identity around being a worship leader and a pastor. Somewhere in the back of my mind, I knew that Re:Train was going to mess with that shaky identity—but I had no idea how much.
The first week of Re:Train was taught by Bill Clem. The focus of this class was to remind us of the Great Commission and that the whole point of ministry is to make disciples. As I listened to Pastor Bill teach that a disciple is someone whose identity is built on Jesus’ perfect work, I began to see more clearly how I had built my identity on my own efforts instead. Throughout Re:Train, Jesus continued to invite me to have my false identity torn down and a new one built in its place.
A Gospel Identity
The gospel message is clear: we are not saved by our good works but by Jesus’ perfect work (Eph. 2:8). Jesus lived a sinless life, he died a brutal, sacrificial death, and then rose from the dead in victory. There is nothing I could ever do that even comes close to what Jesus has already done! God used the entire year of Re:Train to show me how foolish I was to believe that I could add anything to Christ’s perfection.
Where’s Your Heart?
I am thankful that Re:Train is not focused on churning out theology nerds with heads full of knowledge. Of course, there is plenty of reading—this is Mars Hill after all—but Re:Train is about so much more than theology and information. I am thankful that the leadership of Re:Train is committed to helping men and women become the kind of leaders who have hands that are equipped for ministry and hearts that are shaped by the gospel. God used Re:Train to mess with my identity, and for that I am forever grateful.
Applications for 2013–14 ReTrain school year are now open. Apply today to get world-class theological instruction, along with practical ministry expertise from pastor and scholars serving in church ministry.