Episode 16: Spiritual Formation with Brandon Forsythe

Brandon Forsythe is the Minister of Spiritual Formation at Northside Christian Church in Spring, Texas.

What is a Spiritual Formation Pastor?

“It’s about adult discipleship. There is an executive role: overseeing small groups/home groups, mission’s ministry, and service or outreach. Also, counseling; helping people work through some difficult stuff. It’s really about the formation of the heart, that is where you are seeking to connect with God in a deep way and allow the Spirit to bring transformation inside you. Sometimes there’s spiritual disciplines and sometimes communal discipline, but helping people consistently walk with God on a day to day basis.”

Why have a Spiritual Formation Pastor?

“We sat down, and we started asking some tough questions about whether we were creating disciples. The answer was no. We were getting people to attend church, but our member’s faith was like a checklist rather than having a real heart transformation.”

How do you Measure Spiritual Maturity?

“Key performance indexes include group attendance, giving, etc. Those things are important but they don’t tell the whole story. … We try to gather stories about how God has been moving in their lives and how they have been transformed.”

How do you Create Accountability?

“Making sure that everyone knows the standard. So there are meetings on all levels, and the staff understands that there are basic expectations concerning their spiritual lives. You can’t ask a congregation to do things the staff is not doing. So we expect daily time with God, personal accountability, spiritual retreat days, discipleship. [Discipleship] means making sure that you are actively pouring into another Christian.”

Daily Walking with the Spirit of God

“This Language makes some people nervous, but spiritual maturity is not just about reading your bible and checking that off a list. Going to Church and checking that off a list. Serving and checking that off a list. Spiritual formation is focused on letting the Spirit of God transform you into the image of Christ. And the goal is to help our people walk in the spirit every day. … You have to make sure that people understand that you are committed to the discipleship process and that means being a church of disciples who make disciples.”

Resources:

Photo by Leadership and Spiritual Formation DMin / CC BY

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