Come to the Table: Sharing the Feast of Presence Through Spiritual Direction & Formational Prayer (August 18-20, 2017)

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Plenary Speakers
(click on names for biographical information)

Dr. Terry Wardle

Dr. Curt Thompson

"I have earnestly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer."

(Luke 22:15)

The Greek expression is literally, "I have desired with desire," referring to Jesus' strong inner desire to meet these men, whom He loved, at His table. There is no greater love in the universe than the love that called them to this supper. Out of that same longing and desire, the Lord calls us to "Come to the Table."

 At this "table," you will...

  • Experience an event that honors the Lord's presence in every dimension of our time together
  • Hear from leading experts in spiritual direction, counseling (professional, pastoral and lay), and caregiving
  • Learn skills and strategies to more effectively minister to and care for others
  • Meet fellow laborers who share your desire to reach out to the hurting to restore hope

Schedule Highlights (Additional Details Provided at Event)

Friday Evening

  • Plenary 1: God's Guarantee (Wardle)
    In an age of increasing anxiety and insecurity, God has broken into our world through Christ and has provided a foundation for identity security that enables believers to stand in the time of trial and difficulty.

Saturday Morning

  • Plenary 2: Practicing for Heaven: Loving God with All Our Mind (Thompson)
    What does it mean to love God with all our mind? This session will introduce us to the notion of interpersonal neurobiology as God's witness to what He has been doing with intention from before the foundation of the world.

Saturday Morning & Late Afternoon (Workshops - Will Select 2)

  • Introduction to the Enneagram (Dr. Neal Siler)
    This will be an introduction to the nine pathways that make up the Enneagram System of personality types, and an exploration of how this can be of value to the work of spiritual direction.

  • Questions for Jesus: Conversational Prayer Around Your Deepest Desires (Sarah Herring, M.A.)
    What have you been asking Jesus lately? Changing the questions you ask can transform your relationship with God - and your life. This workshop will explore an approach to prayer that can help build the bridge between deep heart desires and the living Christ.
  • Spiritual Direction: Can God Speak to Me Through Dreams? (Dr. Robert Woodcock)
    Dreams come from the undefended deep psyche and can contribute greatly to spiritual growth. This workshop will explore how spiritual directors can benefit from learning some basic principles about dreams, helping themselves and others appreciate and befriend their dreams, which can present as opportunities and obstacles.
  • Love, Healing & Development (Dr. Anne Halley)
    This workshop will explore how an integrated view of and subsequent engagement with the principles of attachment, neurobiological, physiological, emotional and spiritual development can create a foundational and “felt” awareness of God, self and others.

Saturday - Mid-Afternoon (Everyone Except Graduates and Incoming Students of HCM International's Spiritual Direction Program)

  • Positioning God's People to Experience His Presence (Jeff Franks, MAPC, HCM International Executive Director)
    As Christ's followers, we often seek to know God by knowing more about God. Coming to know God requires experiencing His presence. This session will include an extended exercise of practicing the presence of the Lord and some considerations in positioning ourselves and others to experience His presence. 

Saturday - Mid-Afternoon: Special Session with Dr. Curt Thompson* 
*Only Graduates and Incoming Students of HCM International's Spiritual Direction Program can attend this session.

  • Shame: The news is worse than you think. And better than you can imagine.
    This session will explore the phenomenon of shame from the perspective of interpersonal neurobiology, but more importantly from the standpoint of Christian anthropology, helping us better grasp what we were made for and what evil is doing to destroy God's good intentions. 

  • Confessional Communities: Developing Outposts of Goodness and Beauty
    This session will explore the place of community, restraint, perseverance, and the significance of attuning to Jesus' gaze upon us as the antidote for our shame, the liberation and commissioning for our vocations, and the transformation of the multiple domains of the world that we occupy.

Saturday Evening

  • Plenary 3: Integration: Creating an Undivided Heart (Thompson)
    This session will explore how the formation of the heart is reflected in - and energized by - what we see emerging in the recent findings of interpersonal neurobiology. What can happen if we embrace the counterintuitive reality that the repair of ruptures within us is always reflected in the repair of ruptures between us?

Sunday Morning

  • Plenary 4: Freely Given (Wardle)
    The Gospel of the Kingdom is nothing short of breathtaking in the way it secures the identity of believers and enriches their lives with great and precious promises, freely given in Christ.

Conference Details**

**No partial/discounted rates for those unable to attend the full conference. Fees above are for the full conference even if unable to attend all sessions. Fee is for conference only and does NOT include lodging and food (with the exception of light refreshments and special evening receptions).

A $25 administrative fee will be assessed on all registration cancellations. Unless otherwise indicated, registration fee is non-refundable for cancellations after July 31st.


Below are several possible lodging options within 10-15 minutes of Tree of Life Ministry Center. You can also click on the ToL link in the "Conference Details" section above to view a map from which other options can be accessed.


Please select your method of registration from the options below. You may register/pay for more than one individual at a time using either of the registration methods. When paying online, simply increase the number in the provided field and additional names can be added.

General Registration (paying ONLINE)
For those desiring to pay by phone with a card: we have to run your payment through our website, so we ask that you handle this directly from your end using the link above (if possible).

General Registration (paying by CHECK)

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