05 October 2009

Willow Creek and Focus on the Family Promote Contemplative Prayer Proponents

Willow Creek and Emotionally Healthy Spirituality will join forces to promote Contemplative Prayer

Contact: UndergroundNews.us, 608-469-7956

MADISON, Wisc., Sept. 22 /Christian Newswire/ -- Starting on September 15, Willow Creek will distribute the Emotionally Healthy Spirituality Church-wide study, which includes a kit, the EHS book, the EHS Group workbook, the teaching DVD, and The Daily Office.

Emotionally Healthy Spirituality was co-founded by Pete and Geri Scazzero. It is an organization that is supposed to "apply emotional health to biblical spirituality in order to transform leaders, relationships, churches and organizations" according to the EHS website.

Tenet 4 of the 12 Foundational Tenets on the website states, "the church today parallels that of the Roman Empire in the 4th and 5th century. Following the example of Moses, Elijah, John the Baptist and Jesus, the desert fathers fled to the desert to seek God, we too must find our deserts in the midst of our activity for Christ. We can learn a great deal from the contemplative, monastic tradition as we seek to remain rooted as we engage the world with the gospel."

However, many believe the desert fathers received many of their meditative techniques from Eastern beliefs or they developed spontaneously to be like the meditative techniques used in false Eastern religions.

The father of Contemplative Prayer, Thomas Merton, is widely recognized as the person in the twenty-first century who promoted Contemplative Prayer. On page 17 of "Spiritual Classics" edited by Richard Foster and Emilie Griffin, it is said, "His (Merton's) interest in contemplation led him to investigate prayer forms in Eastern religion. Zen masters from Asia regarded him as the preeminent authority on their kind of prayer in the United States."

Also, on June 21, 2009, Focus on the Family put an article on their website called "Taking Off Our 'Happy Faces' at Church" by Lynne Thompson. The article freely promoted the Scazzero's and their book "The Emotionally Healthy Church" (Zondervan) despite the Scazzero's promotion of Contemplative Prayer.

Other endorsers of the Scazzero's include John Ortberg (Menlo Presbyterian Church) and Dr. Jack Hayford (President of the International Foursquare Churches).

UndergroundNews.us is a news and apologetics site. Steve McConkey is the President. He graduated with honors from Minnesota State University-Mankato (BS-Public Health) and Western Kentucky University (Masters of Public Health). From 1982 through 1992, he was a Director/Coach of elite post-collegiate Christian track and field teams.

So tell me, do you go to your Christian church to practice Eastern religious techniques? Remember, just because someone tosses the label "Christian" onto something or just because a "pastor" is promoting and/or teaching it doesn't necessarily mean that it aligns with the Word of God! Keep praying for discernment, and keep looking up!

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