Aaron Niequist hosts a podcast through his book--The Eternal Current--one episode per chapter. Each episode will 1) Reflect on the key idea of that chapter, 2) Have a conversation with someone who is living it out in the world, and 3) Learn a concrete practice that helps us flesh this theme into our hearts, bodies, and relationships. Not merely about ideas...but learning how to swim.
David Bailey, founder of Arrabon, helps us wrestle with the realities of race in the U.S. After a short history lesson, David offers a brilliant definition of “white supremacy”, teaches a roadmap for constructive action, and leads a powerful spiritual practice. A masterclass by a truly gifted guide…for such a time as this.
Angie Hong shares her experience as a Korean-American woman...feeling like she was the wrong body in the place she found herself. But in view of The Creator, she learned that she was actually given the right body; but she was simply in the wrong place. Angie invites us into a four part practice of being the right body in the right place: Truth, Communion, Lament, and Creative Imagination.
Aaron shares a personal experience from the week, reflecting on ways that quarantine has turned his focus overly inward. After telling the story of writing the song “Changed” for the Mars Hill community, he invites us into a short “blessed to be a blessing” liturgy. Join us as we pray for (and seek to serve) our neighbors, family, enemies, and world.
Writer and public theologian Brian Mclaren helps us reflect on a Christianity that helps us love the world rather than escape from it. We explore the tension of rejecting an “us vs them” posture without choosing false equivalence. And then Brian guides a sincere and prophetic prayer for President Trump based on 1 Corinthians 13.
Pastor and author Ashlee Eiland offers a vision and practice for radical kindness. Sharing from her book Human(kind), she calls for something deeper than mere “niceness”--inviting us to embrace our own imago Dei and honor it in everyone we meet. A beautifully prophetic practice for our divided times.
(Part 2 of 2) Fr Michael Sparough, SJ, returns to guide a two part prayer of imagination on the Two Standards by St Ignatius. Together with an original score by Aaron Niequist, we invite you into a fully immersive prayer experience for your heart, mind, imagination, and body. Join us?
Fr Michael Sparough, SJ, returns to guide a two part prayer of imagination on the Two Standards by St Ignatius. Together with an original score by Aaron Niequist, we invite you into a fully immersive prayer experience for your heart, mind, imagination, and body. Join us?
Rich Villodas lives and pastors in Queens, NY. After sharing about life near the center of the pandemic, he guides us in a Lectio Divina experience of Christ’s assuring words: "Take courage, it is I. Don’t be afraid."
Jonathan Merritt guides us in a practice for contemplative activists in the time of pandemic. He helps us anchor our souls deeply in God, and then open to the ways we can participate in loving action—both during the crisis and beyond. May our doing always flow from our being.
Dr Cheryl Bridges Johns reflects theologically and practically on the ways Creation simultaneously centers and expands our souls. And she offers a few concrete practices, whether we live in an urban apartment, a suburban subdivision, or in the middle of Yellowstone National Park. The Creation is inviting us to rememberer our created-ness.
Fr Michael Sparough, SJ, offers dramatic readings of two brilliant prayers: "Thoughts in Solitude" by Thomas Merton, and "I Thirst" by St Mother Teresa. May these words and sounds create holy space for us in these tumultuous days.
Unless we find concrete ways to weep over the brokenness, we will often use the brokenness to break others. Or ourselves. Lament provides a healing third way to engage the sorrow without exporting it. In this episode, Aaron Niequist invites us into this historic spiritual practice. Carried by Jenna Perinne's nine steps of lament, David Gungor's singing, and a whole team of collaborators, you will experience a liturgy of lament, and you'll be empowered to create your own. For such a time as this.
Spiritual director and retreat leader Phileena Heuertz reflects on the ways that stress and fear affect our whole bodies. And she invites us to learn to honor a nervous system that is working hard for our safety, while engaging practices that remind it we are okay. Phileena concludes with a guided time of breath work, silence, and reflection. Deep and profoundly restful.
This episode begins a new series of meditations and practices to help anchor our hearts in something deeper than the news cycle. In this fear-soaked time of sickness and quarantine, a few wise guides will help us create holy space that makes room for our Creator to do what only Love can do. Episode one shares the heart of this journey, and invites us into Fr Michael Sparough's inspired "Sign of the Cross Meditation".
Author and spiritual director Ruth Haley Barton joins Aaron for a deep dive into the central role our desires play in the spiritual life. Rather than repressing or shaming, Ruth invites us to follow Jesus’ example of uncovering and embracing our true, God-given desires. May this conversation stretch and heal you in surprising ways.
How can we actively engage the very real issues of our world without simply adding to the ugliness? Can a Christian be involved in culture, politics, and real life, or must we only focus on “spiritual matters”? Pastor, writer, and theologian David Fitch invites us into the themes and concrete practices of his subversive and inspiring new book “The Church of Us Vs Them”.
Aaron welcomes Todd Deatherage, co-founder of the Telos Group, about his provocative vision to build a pro-Israel, pro-Palestine, pro-peace movement in America and the world. As a peacemaker and a Christ-follower, Todd helps us explore ways that our private faith can and must be connected to our public mission. We don’t need to become an exhausted activist or an isolated contemplative, we can choose a third way.
Mark Scandrette has been leading practice-based experiments in San Francisco and around the world for over twenty years. In this episode, he shares stories from that experience that will fire our imagination for what practicing the way of Jesus can look like WITH OTHERS. And beyond inspiration, Mark offers a series of tools, resources, and practical next steps. We don’t have to do this alone.
Rev Canon Dr Stephanie Spellers joins Aaron to talk about the necessity and challenge of moving outside of our faith traditions. The gift of Ecumenism. Can we remain open to new experiences of God without losing our roots? Can we hold onto the gifts of our preferred tradition without needing it to be dominant? Can we embrace the “both/and” without compromising our deepest values? What are the unique dynamics that our racial identities play in all this? Rev Stephanie guides us masterfully.
Pastor Rich Villodas joins Aaron to explore the tangible ways we can join with the Spirit’s movement in our actual, everyday life. The invitation is participation. In this highly practical episode, Rich teaches a historic framework that can help us stay in the flow of God’s unforced rhythms of Grace, Monday through Sunday.
PART TWO of a two-part episode about the nuts and bolts of creating a practice-based gathering. Glenn Packiam, Jenna Perrine, and Jonathan Martin join Aaron to explore three aspects of a formative service: an opening liturgy, a teaching that leads to practice, and the Eucharist that sends us out. This is the one episode of the season focused a little more on those who lead gatherings, but we hope the conversation will be a gift to everyone.
A two-part episode about the nuts and bolts of creating a practice-based gathering. Glenn Packiam, Jenna Perrine, and Jonathan Martin join Aaron to explore three aspects of a formative service: an opening liturgy, a teaching that leads to practice, and the Eucharist that sends us out. This is the one episode of the season focused a little more on those who lead gatherings, but we hope the conversation will be a gift to everyone.
Shauna Niequist joins Aaron for an honest conversation about the beauty and struggle of a spiritual life that bears good fruit--inside and out. They talked about the spirituality of a well-balanced meal, four cultural lies that are starving us, her story of burnout and soul recovery, and then they walked through a few concrete practices to keep us plugged into the Good Vine. Shauna brings deep wisdom and really fresh language (usually food related!) for a practice-based faith.
In Episode 4, Aaron welcomes Fr Michael Sparough, SJ, to explore the idea and practice of The Kingdom of God. What is The Kingdom and how do we learn to swim in it? From a deep foundation as a Jesuit Priest and a lifetime spent walking with Christians as a spiritual director, Fr Michael brings a winsome wisdom to this incredibly important conversation. At the end, he guides a powerful "Sign of the Cross Meditation" that helps us get swept up into the deep streams.
This is the story of the birth of The Practice, which is a practice-based, contemplative, neo-liturgical, ecumenical, eucharistic gathering we started in the Willow Creek Chapel in 2014. Aaron Niequist shared some of the story and then sat down with three founding members--Lori Shoults, Kellye Fabian, and Jason Feffer--to share reflections from the beginning of this experimental community.
In this episode, Aaron Niequist and author Sarah Bessey share their stories of faith, losing faith, and re-finding it in a new way. The conversation moves into deep and quite honest places, and they try to honor the messy reality of the spiritual life. At the end, Sarah offers three concrete practices that help us not lose our souls in a season of questioning and deconstruction. Friends, new life is possible.
In this very first episode, Aaron Niequist shares the heart behind the podcast and the book that inspired it, The Eternal Current. And at the end, you'll be invited to engage a simple and historic practice called Lectio Divina. The Eternal Current journey begins here.