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Pastors and the Problem of Social Constraint 

Social constraint is the perception that other people don’t want to hear about your life and problems. It’s the thing that makes you decide not to give a real answer when someone asks how you are doing. It’s the thing that makes you swallow your own hurt or stifle your own joy even though others

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Only You Can Start Forest Fires: Reduction as Resilience

In 1935 the United States Forest Service (USFS) instituted a policy called the “10 a.m. policy.” Already using fire suppression as the way of dealing with devastating wildfires for two decades, the 10 a.m. policy was instituted in response to particularly bad fire seasons in the early 1930s. This order mandated that “ every fire

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Engaging in a Community of Resilience: A Collectivist Approach

One of the ways we can cultivate resilience as we engage with one another is to notice how we show up in our communities. Dr. Ron Ruthruff, Associate Professor of Theology and Culture at The Seattle School of Theology and Psychology, shares his thoughts in a collection of three stories.     Joel Aguilar is

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To Stay, Walk Away

When vocation intersects with calling—like church ministry—it can be difficult to step away and unplug. We often feel guilty for not being always available, for not pouring every waking moment into the work of ministry. Here, Andrea Sielaff, Program Evaluation Manager at the Center for Transforming Engagement, argues that if we hope for long-term sustainability

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Purpose Reconsidered: An Alumni Story

My journey with purpose has been fraught with fits and starts and loads of apparently meaningless lulls in between. I was born and raised in Texas and my worldview was highly influenced by the predominantly white southern Baptist church that taught me about Jesus and who He expected me to be. It became my understanding

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The Betwixt and Between: Finding Resilience in Liminality

My all-time favorite movie line comes from the Western Five Card Stud. Dean Martin is out demonstrating his six-gun prowess to Inga Stevens, shooting bottles off the corral rails, when up rides Bob Mitchum as “The Preacher.” Mitchum asks to give it a try, so Dean hands him the pistol and Big Bob proceeds to

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Refreshing Your Way of Life

“A Rule of Life is descriptive in that it articulates our intentions and defines the ways in which we want to live. When we fall short of these intentions, the Rule of Life becomes prescriptive, showing us how we can return to the path that we have set for ourselves and recapture our original vision.”

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Practical Resilience in Ministry: A Webinar with Andrea Sielaff

On June 25, Andrea Sielaff, MAC, Researcher for Resilient Leaders Project, hosted a conversation on the need for practices that can help cultivate practical resilience for ministry leaders. This was the final installment of the “Resilience in Crisis” webinar series, created to support, resource, and encourage leaders and practitioners through the pandemic crisis. Andrea interviewed