Thursday, December 20, 2007

I Apologise

Forgive Me Lord

As I looked over the Seasoned Believers' blog I found that it actually conveys a feeling that is the opposite of what I believe. Visitors seem to come away with the feeling that I want people to work harder and longer to earn God's favor or at least my favor. Nothing can be farther from the truth. I am so sorry I led you astray.

The key to freedom as a Seasoned Believer is not DOING but BEING.

Another way of saying this is: Performance does not produce Person hood. Person hood results in joyful Performances with God.

Second, BEING/Person hood is not earned, deserved or produced. It is offered freely by a gracious God as a result of our faith in Him.

Third, our BEING/Person hood is caught or recognized and apprehended or appreciated as a result of learning how to abide in the finished work of Christ.

Fourth, we tend to "hit the wall" through a crisis after serving God for several decades. It is not restricted to Baby Boomers but most Boomers have at some time, "Hit the wall".

Fifth, the crisis often slows us down enough for us to seek God in a spiritually transforming manner. We finally begin to understand the passage, "Count it all joy when you encounter various trials..." James 1:2-3

Sixth, Seasoned Believers are at the wall, through the wall or frustrated with the wall and the lack of resources in the church to help them understand the wall in God's plan. DOING more or Performing better will not help us move through the wall.

Seventh, it is our goal to support people as they seek God's guidance and voice through the wall and afterwards.

See you at the wall...

Seasoned Believers is a ministry of Sweeten Life systems, a 501c3 not-for profit faith based charity. (Formerly Life Way Incorporated) P.O. Box 498455, Cincinnati, Ohio 45249

The Life Way Counseling Centers is a separate Clinical Counseling Group organized as a C Corporation. It supports Sweeten Life Systems but the two organizations have no official corporate connections although Dr. Sweeten is the founder of both.


paula clare said...

Hi Gary,
I for one NEVER got the feeling that you had an "agenda" nor that the "agenda" was to get us (Seasoned Believers) to do more.

Perhaps it's because I've known you for years, or perhaps it's because every encounter with you has led me to a new understanding of God's grace...but you are one of the FIRST church leaders in MY life to help me recognize that being a follower of Christ is a PROCESS not a one-time event at the altar. You have always said "It's all about grace, folks." Which, in MY thinking, doesn't speak to performance at ALL, but instead to the process of BECOMING.

I do not come away from your blog feeling chastised, but rather encouraged and inspired.

So, from THIS apology necessary. In fact, *I* need to offer you a word of thanks and gratitude for being a "cyber presence" in my life.

Peace and All Good,
Paula Clare

Gary Sweeten said...

Thanks. I appreciate your affirmation.

Michael W Cristiani said...

Ditto Paula for me, bro. Sorry I have seemed absent the past month or so. Been reading, and getting blessed by this and Brave Heart.

Peace and All Good!

Gary Sweeten said...

My concern is about people who do not know me as, ""The Doctor of Grace" as you guys have for so long. As I have interviewed folks I hear many react negatively to the idea that Seasoned Believers have a lot of gifts and wisdom yet to share with the world. They seem to think that I am urging them to do more as if they have not done enough.

I hope we get a lot of comments about it. Thanks...