Hungry for Spiritual REAL-Ness?

This article was originally posted at AndyBraner.com
If you’re anything like me, I’m always on the hunt for someone to ignite my imagination concerning spiritual things. I grew up in a Baptist Church, attended a Bible Church through High School, was involved in a wonderful Assembly of God Church at the beginning of my marriage, and now am engaged in a community that is trying to figure out how to lead a community drawing from all it’s members.

Sometimes I feel like I’ve been around so many different ways of doing “church” I spend a lot of time trying to figure out what are the most important parts of each, and dwell on those. I think we can all agree the institution of church can sometimes be all about the institution, and sometimes forget about the main things. I don’t fault any of those churches, I just think sometimes we are drawn to the human parts of the institution without really focusing well on the message of Jesus.

For the last several years, I’ve been hanging around a group that challenges me to imagine. My thought process is something like:

What would it look like if we gathered around the name and teaching of Jesus?
What if the teachings of Jesus were central to everything we talked about?
If Jesus was so radical, inside and outside the church, how do we engage in our culture today?
For my own spiritual development, how can I challenge my lifestyle to look more like the way Jesus talked when he taught the masses in the first century?

Again, I’m not trying to distance myself from church, as much as I want to focus on Jesus at this stage in my spiritual journey.

If you’re anything like me, then I’ve got a place for you.

A few years ago I was introduced to this concept of just focusing on Jesus, and I ran into this crowd of people who are trying to put Jesus in the center of their conversations. Culturally, Socially, and through International relationships, this group is trying to allow for the imagination of Jesus to become the central theme in all our lives.

Well, this year, they’ve put together a gathering in July inviting people like you and me. It’s going to be in Vail Colorado at the Eagle Ranch, and the line up of speakers are the who’s who of people trying to initiate a conversation, both domestically and internationally, that may just help people like you and I to think again about the way we see Jesus. The gathering is called Simply Jesus, and you can find out all about it on their website http://simplyjesusgathering.com.

You can watch videos, read about the people presenting, but most of all; when you come to this gathering, it’s not about a conference. You’ll have access to all the people on the roster. You can ask questions, have a lunch time, or maybe even just sit around the fire with those on the list that will help you imagine as they imagine.

In any event, I would love for you to check out this awesome group of people. They’ve helped me in the past, and I know they can help give you some incredible tools to center your spiritual journey around Jesus.

Andy Braner

Andy Braner

Andy Braner is the President and Founder of KIVU, a non-profit youth organization helping students realize the importance of faith in their world. KIVU hosts 1000 teenagers a summer in their first location outside Durango, Colorado and students come from 26 different countries. Andy’s heart beats for reconciliation and inspiration for people around the world to find common bonds of faith and respectful diversity of difference. He lives in Colorado with his wife of 17 years, and their five children.

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