Changing the culture
San Gabriel Mission
The first center of revival in the Los Angeles area
Why we do what we do in Stone to Flesh Community and School of the Heart?
The change of culture in the mindset of leadership and 'congregation' takes time, it takes years, even among people where the majority are very intentional disciples.
It takes time to shift our image of God, His nature, the expectation, the whole narration about one or more aspects, attitude, practices coming from that knowledge, from our own experience of God to that which is revealed to us through the Scriptures and Tradition, and through the witness of saints, known and unknown.
It takes an enormous effort for the leaders to move the core team and only then the whole group forward toward constant acknowledgment of who God is against experiences that show the impossibility, discouragement, perhaps lack of eschatological hope, personal failures and sins, disappointments, lack of fruit, immaturity etc. That’s why when we want fast results mimicking growth, we opt for the efficiency of proposing events instead of investing in the vision of true resurrection. The centers of revival will not be known only for the amount of physical healings, these will be only natural (or super-natural) accompaniments to the renewal of mind, heart and lives that has to take place individually and corporately if the shift will take a place in the church culture. We will reap the harvest in servanthood leadership, Spirit infused creativity, holiness that shuts the mouth of evil and innovative life style. That's why the leaders who want to make more than personal impact are required almost heroic patience, wisdom, skills, prudence, courage (basically all theological and cardinal virtues) to go for it. It is a slow process, it will be stalled, it will be tried, it will discourage many who are looking for quick fix, power manifestations mainly, an emotional lift, one man show, one powerful gift as an addition to their 'ministry' or whatever other motives people have.
It is an amazing accomplishment if the whole leadership and a substantial part of a group eventually goes under real metanoia (conversion) and starts living by faith, not by sight, acknowledging their weaknesses, humbly walking in the Spirit, expecting the Kingdom mentality and processes to be seen and manifested in people's lives without hype but with joy, meek awareness of entering into the realm of heaven on earth. It's basically what we admire in saints bios but we want to see it being spread among all whom we serve as leaders.
We have to go beyond programs where people will experience just the interrupting power of the Holy Spirit but are not brought into any maturity in Christ.
We have to cling to the revealed nature of God and proclaiming His goodness, tenderness, and bringing people to desire to live in His continual Presence, which is a mystical and contemplative way of life from which our worship will burst out, and not being able to be contained, it will affect the way we pray, spend our free time and money, how we deal with people and build The Church.
It's interesting that some saints say, and in some current Catholic movements you will see it, it takes three years to experience real metanoia personally, and only then people are really starting to get what does it mean to move as a Body. It takes some more years to become one in heart and mind, and some more to become one in the Spirit. It's a Trinitarian art to which so very few will dedicate their lives, as it will cost them everything bc they have to offer all freely (give away) to create anew. 2 Cor 4:18 and Col 3:1-3.