I have already recommended that my readers spend some time with the recording of Cherith Fee Nordling's messages from the recent Vineyard National Conference in Galveston, Texas. I happened upon a very nice summary of the message from the Vineyard Great Lakes website which I am cutting and pasting below. It may help you better understand Cherith's presentation and whet your appetite to hear it for yourself or it may just be enough for you to ponder all by itself. Here goes -
"With the table having been set the night before by Bert, Cherith blew the gathering away with aprophetic talk. It is hard to capture in words how palpable the presence of God was from the moment she began to speak. Her assigned topic was “What impact will the coming Kingdom have on Heroic Leadership?” In seeking God’s heart in answer to this question the simple prophetic answer is: The Kingdom will kill us! The Vineyard must stop sidestepping death, because death and suffering are where the New Creation breaks into our world. This is about death and resurrection. In order to experience the future resurrection we must be willing to bear the cost of death in the present.
There will be a great temptation to be liked; to do the things that make sense; to dodge the cost of the present. She said the most of us desire to be the Lord’s friend with benefits, but heroic leadership is costly, and Jesus understood the cost. Jesus was tempted just as we are, but lived out of a connection to the Father fueled by the Spirit. (This is the best explanation that I have ever heard of Jesus being tempted like we are – I mean she got right down to it – that yes Jesus did in fact have a penis and did in fact experience sexual temptation).
We think that we have counted the cost but we haven’t. Right now the church is heavily invested in resuscitation, but God is in the business of ressurection. We are going to have to die to experience resurrection. This was a very compelling call to embrace a theology of suffering (it reminded me of what Gary Best said about developing of a theology of suffering). The ministry time that followed was an intense time of repentance, and truly laying down our lives. It would be well worth the time investment of listening to this talk online: