2019-2020 Academic Year Focus: Intentional Spiritual Growth through the Means of Grace

Your Alumni Office is giving you an early scoop on the upcoming theme for the 2019-2020 Academic Year!

The administration of Asbury Theological Seminary began an initiative to create a targeted focus for our community each academic year. During the 2018-2019 Academic Year, our community’s intentional focus was living a “Spirit-Filled Life.” Throughout the school year, we learned, discussed, and heard testimony about living a life that is empowered by the Holy Spirit of God. What an impact it made on our community! Not only did we foster this openness and learning on the Kentucky campus, but we intentionally included our satellite campuses, ExL students, and even our Alumni, Trustees, and friends in this initiative!

We experienced people praying for and receiving an impartation of power and gifting from the Holy Spirit as we openly welcomed the unhindered Presence of God in our midst. We also found that we bonded much more deeply as a strong family and grew to know and appreciate one another on a much more personal level as we opened ourselves to be vulnerable and real with one another about our struggles and our deep need for God’s Spirit to lead and guide us. We learned even more deeply just how much we depend on God’s internal guidance and empowerment through the gift of the Holy Spirit dwelling within us.

For the 2019-2020 Academic Year, we are focusing on the next step: intentionally walking with the Spirit of God into deeper spiritual maturity by engaging the “Means of Grace” God uses in order to form our minds, bodies, and spirits. Each month of the Academic Year, we will focus on a specific, tangible thing we can do or practice in order to deepen our relationship with God and one another, because we know this will result in deeper spiritual maturity and the power we need to reach a broken world for the sake of the gospel and the Kingdom.

Here’s a preview of each month’s scheduled focus:

  • September – Community and Banding
  • October – Prayer
  • November – Scripture
  • December – Hospitality
  • February – Eucharist (Holy Communion)
  • March – Fasting
  • April – Healthy Living
  • May – Service

Each month, we will publish an update in this Alumni Link so that all our Alumni can follow along from wherever they are, growing and being empowered by God with the rest of your Asbury family! We want you to feel connected and supported even when you must serve in far-away places. When we publish each article, it will offer a recap of what happened during the previous month as well as a preview of the focus and activities for the following month. We will also give suggestions for tangible ways you can participate and intentionally grow with us.

In next month’s article, we will also include the projected schedule for our Chapel services, which will often include sermons and teaching about our Means of Grace themes for each month. We hop you will follow along with us as part of the Asbury Theological Family, learning and growing together in faithful witness to the world.

3 responses to “2019-2020 Academic Year Focus: Intentional Spiritual Growth through the Means of Grace”

  1. Art Leach says:

    Upon reading Rick Warren’s book “The Purpose-Driven Church” (at our bishop’s encouratement), I got excited about pursuing God’s purposes instead of any human’s (even my own).. About a year later I recognized that God’s purposes are really, really big, far bigger than any human can achieve. Then I remembered how in the Bible, all of God’s purposes were accomplishes through God”s people. After some thought I came up with the mission of the church – “God’s People Filled With God’s Presence Fulfilling God’s Purposes”. The first step included confession, repentance, believing and receiving (John 1:12). Being filled with God’s Presence was focused on God’s Promised Means of Grace – Prayer, Scripture, Christian community, Baptism, and Communion. God’s Purposes were the ones Warren had used – Worship, Fellowship, Discipleship, Ministry, and Mission / Evangelism. This use of God’s Promised Means of Grace thus became the heart of Christians in God’s church.

  2. Jabez Tiong says:

    Hi, thank you for the info.

    Can you tell me more about the theme for Sept: Community and Banding?

    thank you

    • Patricia Taylor says:

      Certainly! The focus for September will be on developing and leaning into Christian community – the way that we can all encourage one another in holiness and spiritual growth. We will be talking about bands (small accountability groups) and how to develop one. We will also have opportunities to put these concepts into practice.

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