Wednesday, December 30, 2020

Episode 39 Top Spiritual Lessons from 2020 with Dr Brian Russell

In this Episode, Dr. Brian Russell shares his top spiritual lessons from 2020: 

Reservoir vs. Canal, KASH, Curiosity, Silence/Solitude Practices, The Body Keeps the Score, and Simplicity

Dr. Brian Russell is the curator of the Deep Dive Spirituality Conversations Podcast as well as a Professor of Biblical Studies and Coach.

His most recent book is (Re)Aligning with God: Reading Scripture for Church and World


Group Coaching for Pastor and Spiritual Leaders:

Coaching for Business and Life: 

Twitter: @briandrussell

Instagram: @yourprofessorforlife

YouTube Channel: Deep Dive Spirituality with Dr. Brian Russell

 Reservoir versus Canal:

Bernard of Clairvaux Sermon 18 on the Song ofSongs:

Silence and Solitude Practices: 

Episode 8: Brian Russell 

Episode 13: Roundtable on Centering Prayer 

Body Keeps the Score:

Bessel Van Der Kolk The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma. 

Episode 21 with Dr. Elaine Heath


Episode 1: Gene Yotka

Episodes 3 and 5 Michael Voigts 

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

Episode 38 Gene Yotka – Reflections on the Contemplative Life in 2020 and Beyond

In this episode, Gene Yotka (Spiritual Director and Founder of the Awakening Institute) talks about contemplative spirituality and the lessons of 2020. Listen to Episode #1 with Gene Yotka: Books Recommended by Gene: Merton When the Trees say Nothing Dom Augustin Guillerand Prayer of the Presence of God Bruno Barnhardt Future of Wisdom J. August Higgins Mysticism and Contemporary Life: Essays in Honor of Bernard McGinn Complete Mystical Works of Meister Eckhart Liminal Space Oneing Richard Rohr (January 2020) Old Recommendations by Gene from Episode #1: Thomas Merton, New Seeds of Contemplation David Steindl-Rast Gratefulness is the heart of prayer Benedicta Ward The Desert Fathers: Sayings of the Early Christian Monks Contact and Bio: Email: Website: Face book: The Awakening Institute Linked In: Eugene T Yotka Mailing address: The Awakening Institute, 5040 Mayflower St. Cocoa, Florida Bio: Gene Yotka is husband to his wife MaryAnn and father of 5 (Beau, Tara, Kitty, Kurt and Victoria), as well as grandfather to 6 (Isabella, Kaya, Alina, Lincoln, Richard and Kurt). He holds a master’s in divinity (M.Div.) as well as a masters in pastoral counseling (MAPC), both through Asbury Theological Seminary. Gene is also a graduate of the 3-year certification program in spiritual companionship with a practicum in spiritual direction from St. Thomas University. Gene is a retired pastor who spent 12 years of ministry in the local church. Currently, he is the founder and director of The Awakening Institute for Spiritual Formation, Spiritual Direction and Soul Care, which is a multi-faceted ministry for the training of spiritual directors, while providing classes and retreats for those wishing to explore Christian contemplative practices, which are designed for those seeking a deeper experience in our Lord Jesus Christ. Dr. Brian Russell is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to

Wednesday, December 9, 2020

Episode 37 Dr Winfield Bevins on Liturgy, Mission, and Spiritual Formation

In this week's episode, Dr. Winfield Bevins talks about the power of liturgy, spiritual formation, and the mission of church planting. Winfield Bevins is a “liturgical missiologist” whose passion is to help others connect to the roots of the Christian faith for discipleship and mission. He currently serves as the Director of Church Planting at Asbury Theological Seminary. He frequently speaks at conferences on a variety of topics and as both an adjunct professor and guest lecturer at various seminaries and universities in the United States and England. He has a Doctor of Ministry from Southeastern Seminary in Wake Forest and is pursuing a PhD at the University of Aberdeen, Scotland. Resources by Winfield Bevins: A Field Guide to Daily Prayer Simply Anglican: An Ancient Faith for Today's World Marks of a Movement: What the Church Today Can Learn From the Wesleyan Revival Ever Ancient, Ever New: The Allure of Liturgy for a New Generation Church-Planting Revolution: A Guidebook for Explorers, Planters, and Their Teams Recommended Resources: Book of Common Prayer (1979 ed) Peter Scazzero Emotionally Healthy Spirituality Robert Mulholland Invitation to a Journey: A Roadmap for Spiritual Formation Howard Snyder The Radical Wesley Connect with Winfield: Twitter: @winfieldbevins Instagram: @winfield.bevins Connect with Brian: Twitter: @briandrussell Instagram: @yourprofessorforlife Deep Dive Spirituality Training for Pastors: Brian's Book on Missional Reading of Scripture: (re)Aligning with God: Reading Scripture for Church and World Links to Amazon are affiliate links

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Episode 36 Frank Viola on Reclaiming the Gospel of the Kingdom

In this episode, Frank Viola shares his passion for the kingdom of God, organic expressions of the Church, and deep abiding in Christ.

Bio: Frank Viola is a bestselling author of 12 books (8 best sellers), A-list blogger, and popular conference speaker. His ministry is known as “The Deeper Journey.” Viola’s mission is to help serious followers of Jesus know their Lord more deeply so they can experience real transformation and make a lasting impact. Selected Book’s by Frank ( Insurgence: Reclaiming the Gospel of the Kingdom From Eternity to Here: Rediscovering the Ageless Purpose of God Jesus Manifesto: Restoring the Supremacy and Sovereignty of Jesus (w/ Leonard Sweet) Pagan Christianity?: Exploring the Roots of Our Church Practices (w/ George Barna) Reimagining Church: Pursuing the Dream of Organic Christianity Book Recommendations by Frank: Watchmen Nee Normal Christian life
Frank Laubach You are my friends (out of print)
T. Austin Sparks The School of Christ Connect with Frannk Connect with Brian: Twitter: @briandrussell Instagram: @yourprofessorforlife Brian's Book on Missional Reading of Scripture: (re)Aligning with God: Reading Scripture for Church and World Links to Amazon are Affiliate links.

Tuesday, November 24, 2020

Episode 35 Drs. Justus Hunter and Phil Tallon on The Absolute Basics of the Wesleyan Way

In this week’s episode, Drs. Justus Hunter and Phil Tallon talk about their new book: Absolute Basics of the Wesleyan Way (Seedbed 2020). We focus most of our conversation on the meaning and experience of holiness of heart and life. Phil Tallon (PhD) is an Assistant Professor of Theology at Houston Baptist University. He’s the author of The Poetics of Evil (Oxford, 2012) and The Absolute Basics of the Christian Faith (Seedbed, 2016). Twitter: @philiptallon Justus Hunter (PhD) is an Assistant Professor of Church History at United Theological Seminary in Dayton, Ohio. He is the author of If Adam Had Not Sinned: The Reason for the Incarnation from Anselm to Scotus.  Twitter: @JustusHunter. Resources by Hunter and Tallon: The Absolute Basics of the Wesleyan Way Hunter’s books: If Adam Had Not Sinned: The Reason for the Incarnation from Anselm to Scotus Tallon’s books: The Absolute Basics of the Christian Faith The Poetics of Evil: Toward an Aesthetic Theodicy Connect with Brian: Twitter: @briandrussell Instagram: @yourprofessorforlife Brian's Book on Missional Reading of Scripture: (re)Aligning with God: Reading Scripture for Church and World

Wednesday, November 18, 2020

Episode 34 Dr Steve Rankin on Spiritual Formation and the Practice of Holiness

Dr. Steve Rankin (director of the Spiritual Maturity Project and retired chaplain of Southern Methodist University) takes us on a deep dive into spiritual formation and the practice of holiness. Connect with Steve:  Blogs: and under the name “Pressing On.” Search for Spiritual Maturity Project Facebook page.  Twitter: @StephenWRankin Connect with Brian: Twitter: @briandrussell Instagram: @yourprofessorforlife Deep Dive Spirituality Group Coaching for Pastors Books by Steve: Aiming at Maturity: The Goal of the Christian Life Books Recommended by Steve: Robert Coleman, The Master Plan of Evangelism. Robert Roberts, Spiritual Emotions: A Psychology of Christian Virtues, Lesslie Newbigin, Gospel in a Pluralist Society John Wesley, A Plain Account of Christian Perfection Bio: Steve's a retired university chaplain from Southern Methodist University.  Before that gig, he served as professor of religion and campus minister at Southwestern College in Kansas.  Pastoral ministry for 12 or so years before then, with a 3 year stint in an expatriate congregation outside Rome, Italy.  Started adult life (post-college) as a junior high teacher and basketball and track coach.  In some form or another, he has taught every age from Kindergarten through doctor of ministry students. He's married to Joni and they have four grown children and five grandchildren.

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Episode 33 Dr Leonard Sweet on Contextual Intelligence, Semiotics and Holiness

In this week’s episode, Dr. Len Sweet shares deep insights from his new book Contextual Intelligence: The Ancient Secret to Mission on the Front Lines, practices for sustaining excellence over a lifetime, semiotics, and holiness in the 21st century. Bio: Author of more than two hundred articles, 1500+ published sermons and sixty books, Leonard Sweet’s recent publications include the groundbreaking textbook on preaching, Giving Blood: A Fresh Paradigm for Preaching, the best-seller From Tablet to Table, The Bad Habits of Jesus, and the fall 2019 release of the twenty-year successor to SoulTsunami, Rings of Fire: Walking in Faith Through a Volcanic Future.   Len often appears on the “50 Most Influential Christians in America” listings, and in 2010 was selected by the top non-English Christian website as one of the “Top 10 Influential World Christians of 2010”. His “Napkin Scribbles” podcasts can be accessed on or spotify. His Twitter and Facebook microblogs are ranked as some of the highest in the religious world.  Len works with graduate students at four institutions: Drew University, where he has occupied the E. Stanley Jones Chair, George Fox University, Tabor College, and Evangelical Seminary, where he currently holds the Charles Wesley Senior Professorship of Doctoral Studies. In 2015 he launched his own homiletics resource One of the most sought-after speakers in the religious world today, he resides on Orcas Island in the San Juan Islands. Selected Books by Len: Contextual Intelligence (co-authored with Michael Beck)  

Giving Blood: A Fresh Paradigm for Preaching 

Rings of Fire From Table to Table The Bad Habits of Jesus Trilogy on Jesus mention during interview: Jesus Manifesto: Restoring the Supremacy and Sovereignty of Jesus Christ (w/Frank Viola): Jesus: A Theography (w/Frank Viola) Jesus Speaks: Learning to Recognize and Respond to the Lord's Voice (w/Frank Viola) Other books by Dr. Sweet: Connect with Len: Twitter: @lensweet Previous Episodes with Len’s co-author on Contextual Intelligence Michael Beck Episode #24 Episode #2 Connect with Brian: Twitter: @briandrussell IG: @yourprofessorforlife Deep Dive Spirituality Group Coaching: Business or Life Coaching:

Above links include Amazon affiliate links.

Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Episode 32 Dr JR Woodward Identity, Spiritual Formation and the Shaping of Missional Leaders

In this week’s episode, Dr. JR Woodward talks about the critical role of character and identity formation for missional leadership. We also engage in a rich conversation about the role of desire in spiritual formation. Bio: JR Woodward (PhD, University of Manchester U.K.) has been passionately planting churches on the East and West Coast that value tight-knit community, life-forming discipleship, locally-rooted presence and boundary-crossing mission for over 25 years. He is the author of Creating a Missional Culture (IVP, 2012) and co-author of The Church as Movement (IVP, 2016). He co-founded the Missio Alliance and currently serves as the National Director for the V3 Church Planting Movement. He is the co-founder of the Praxis Gathering and writes for numerous websites and journals. He also holds a Masters of Arts in Global Leadership from Fuller Theological Seminary. He loves to surf, travel, read, skateboard and new people. He enjoys photography and film and tries to attend the Sundance Film Festival whenever he can. Books by JR Woodward Creating a Missional Culture (IVP, 2012) The Church as Movement: Starting and Sustaining Missional-Incarnational Communities (with Dan White; IVP, 2016) ViralHope: Good News from the Urbs to the Burbs (and Everything in Between) (2010) Books Recommended by JR Rene Girard Deceit, Desire, & the Novel: Self and Other in Literary Structure Lesslie Newbiggin The Gospel in a Pluralist Society Peter Scazzero The Emotionally Healthy Leader: How Transforming Your Inner Life Will Deeply Transform Your Church, Team, and the World James K. A. Smith Desiring the Kingdom (Cultural Liturgies) William Stringfellow An Ethic for Christians and Other Aliens in a Strange Land Van Gelder and Zscheile Participating in God's Mission: A Theological Missiology for the Church in America (The Gospel and Our Culture Series (GOCS)) Walter Wink Engaging the Powers: Discernment and Resistance in a World of Domination NT Wright Brian's Book on Missional Interpretation (Re)Aligning with God: Reading Scripture for Church and World Connect with JR: Twitter: @dreamawakener Website: Connect with Brian: Twitter: @briandrussell IG: @yourprofessorforlife Website: Deep Dive Spirituality Group Coaching for Pastors: Links to Amazon are affiliate links.

Wednesday, October 28, 2020

Episode 31 John Carroll: The Ministry of Teaching Spiritual Formation

John Carroll takes us on a deep dive into the ministry of teaching spiritual formation to others. Listen in as he shares his story and lessons learned during his journey in created spiritual formation programs for two major ministries including his current role at Dallas Willard Ministries


John Carroll’s great passion is for the two "ships" in life: DiscipleSHIP and RelationSHIP, where Christian spirituality and ecclesiology meet one another.  John presently directs the School of Kingdom Living for Dallas Willard Ministries. His recent experience includes the Apprentice Institute for Christian Spiritual Formation (Wichita, KS), as well as the Teaching Pastor at Hope Covenant Church (El Dorado, KS).  John holds a M.Div from Asbury Theological Seminary (2013) and will be ordained in the Evangelical Covenant Church in June 2021. He and his wife, Amber, have two teenage children and live in Melbourne, FL.

Dallas Willard Ministries

School of Kingdom Living

Resources Recommended by John Carroll

Shane Claiborne The Irresistible Revolution, Updated and Expanded: Living as an Ordinary Radical 

Jan Johnson Abundant Simplicity: Discovering the Unhurried Rhythms of Grace

Dallas Willard Renovation of the Heart: Putting On the Character of Christ 

---- Spirit of the Disciplines: Understanding How God Changes Lives 

Brian Zahnd Water into Wine: Some of My Story 

Connect with Dr. Brian Russell

Twitter: @briandrussell

Instagram: @yourprofessorforlife

Group Coaching for Pastors:

Business or Life Coaching: 

Links to Amazon are affiliate links.

Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Episode 30: Dr Bob Tuttle – Entire Sanctification, Mentoring, and the Work of the Holy Spirit

In today’s episode, Dr. Robert “Bob” Tuttle discusses entire sanctification, the power of the baptism of the Holy Spirit, and his ministry of mentoring. Bob and I cover much ground today and our conversation ends in a powerful testimony about holiness and the work of God in our lives. Don’t miss this one. Dr. Robert Tuttle was also a guest on Episode 7: Bob has published over a dozen books over the years and chapters in half a dozen more.  In today’s conversation, we focus on Sanctity without the Starch: A Layperson’s Guide to a Wesleyan Theology of Grace Other notable works by Bob include: The Story of Evangelism, A History of the Witness of the Gospel (Abingdon Press, 2006).  Shortening the Leap, From Honest Doubt to Enduring Faith (Bristol House)  In Our Time, the Life and Ministry of E. Stanley Jones (ESJ Foundation).  Bob and his wife, Dianne, have homes in Cashiers, NC and Vero Beach, FL where they enjoy entertaining, gardening, fishing, and visiting with family (four grown children and six grandchildren) and friends. Bob also recommends the following writings for those interested in taking the next step in their spiritual formation: E. Stanley Jones Song of Ascent  Thomas a Kempis, Imitation of Christ  Please tell your friends about the Deep Dive Spirituality Videocast. It's also available on Spotify, Podbean, and iTunes as a podcast. Interested in a dynamic group coaching program for pastors and spiritual leaders? Check out

Tuesday, October 13, 2020

Episode 29: Dr Brian Russell – The Old Testament and the Love of God and Neighbor

Is the Old Testament still relevant today? In this episode, Dr. Russell examines the critical role that the Old Testament plays in promoting the Love for God and for Neighbor by critiquing idolatry, syncretism, and injustice.

Dr. Brian Russell (Ph.D.) is a professor of Biblical studies, an author, speaker, and coach. He is passionate about the intersection of biblical studies and spiritual formation. He is curator of a group coaching program for pastors called Deep Dive Spirituality. 

Connecting with Brian:
Twitter: @briandrussell

Instagram: @yourprofessorforlife

Deep Dive Spirituality Group Coaching: 

Books by Brian
(re)Aligning with God: Reading Scripture for Church and World

Books Recommended by Brian for Deeper Study on this Topic

John Oswalt The Bible Among the Myths 

John Oswalt Called to Be Holy: A Biblical Perspective 

Collins/Wall, Wesley One Volume Commentary 

Links provided above are Amazon Affiliate links. If you purchase products through these links, a small commission is paid to Dr. Brian Russell. This does not increase your purchase price.

Wednesday, October 7, 2020

Episode 28 Mark Danzey – Coaching and the Ministry of Making Disciples

Episode 28: Mark Danzey–Coaching and the Ministry of Discipleship

This week, Mark Danzey talk about the role that coaching plays in leadership and life. 

Are you a pastor who is interested in participating in a dynamic group experience? Check out: 

Bio: Mark has been coaching professionals in a variety of industries for the last 25 years. Passionate about his work, he helps executives, directors, managers and individuals lead, equip, and inspire. He is a certified professional coach with the International Coaching Federation, a certified Gallup’ Strengthsfinder coach and an Enneagram trainer for individuals and teams.

Mark and his wife, Tammy live in the Atlanta, Georgia area have been married for 16 years. Together they have four grown children and one amazing grandson! 


Narrow Gate Equipping for Life.

Recommend Resources:

Robert Coleman, The Master Plan of Evangelism 

Rohr, Breathing Under Water: Spirituality and the Twelve Steps 

Shirzad Chamine, Positive Intelligence: Why Only 20% of Teams and Individuals Achieve Their True Potential AND HOW YOU CAN ACHIEVE YOURS 

Rohr The Enneagram: A Christian Perspective