Transform 2018

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The Life Model and Transformation

Life Model founder and chief neurotheologian Dr. Jim Wilder gives an overview of the Life Model and how the the Life Model can contribute to increasing the yield of transformation for those seeking it. He’ll address challenging questions such as, “Why is transformation difficult?” and, “What are the obstacles encountered by those seeking to foster transformation in their congregation, families, friends and selves?”

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Transforming Neighbors…and Beyond

Enter into a conversation of transformation between Dave Mead and Ramie and Vanessa Miller. They will share how they’ve experienced Immanuel entering into the neighborhood and workplace through authentic, joy-filled relationships. In these real stories, you’ll hear how elements of the Life Model came to life, were passed on, and transformed lives.

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Thinking Biblically about the Life Model

Michael Sullivant has been involved in church pastoring and church leadership for over 40 years, and currently serves as a board member with Life Model Works. In this session Michael will share about the launch of his new book, “Thinking Biblically About the Life Model”. You’ll hear how Michael and his wife Terri’s lives have been deeply impacted by the Life Model, and be given sound biblical wisdom on seeing the Life Model through the lens of God’s Word.

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Life Model Works Organization Overview

Jim Martini, CEO of Life Model Works, recounts the history and development of LMW, lists some of the partner organizations that are adapting and spreading the Life Model, and shares how Life Model Works fits in an overall ecosystem of ministries, movements, and people who are committed to seeing transformation spread.

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Making the Life Model Contagious

In this session, Dr. Jim Wilder participates in a discussion with several leaders around making elements of the Life Model more contagious. The ultimate dream of Life Model Works is to see the 19 relational brain skills become so contagious that they spread everywhere and to everyone. These leaders will discuss where elements of the Life Model have become contagious and the factors contributing to seeing these transforming elements spread as measured by how many, how deep, and how fast.

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Moving the Church Toward Transformation

Are you looking for deep and lasting transformation? Are you impatient with living in the now? Learn how to live in the present right where God wants you to be! Before joining the leadership team at Oak Hills Church, Greg Hawkins served alongside Bill Hybels at Willow Creek for 20 years. There he co-authored the Reveal study which showed that programs don’t produce the deep and lasting transformation that can only come through relationships. Greg talks about the Reveal study and then shifts gears and talks about how we need to live in the present to feel His Presence.

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Fixing the Broken Discipleship Factory

The church is commonly understood to be a factory producing a product: disciples. So, how are we doing? Why does the church seem to struggle so much to produce mature, Spirit-led disciples? Together, Life Model and Deeper Walk are providing solutions to this problem that have the potential to drastically change the way the church makes disciples. This presentation will lay out an agenda for change anchored in a re-evaluation of the Gospel message.

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Life Model Works | Core Curriculum

Jim Martini reviews the key resources of the Life Model to help you experience transformation and to help others do the same.

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The Biblical Foundation for Jesus’ Transformative Community

Pastor Charlotte Lehman believes that establishing a relational community culture is not just for counselors and healing ministers – it is Jesus’ charge to all who would be his followers. In an accessible yet compelling fashion, Charlotte will share her journey with the Bible that led to this conviction about the priority and practices of staying relational. She’ll give examples of how her church community has worked to build a relational culture and experienced its benefits.

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Add Relational Protein To Your Small Group Diet

Small groups are an ideal gathering to practice the 19 relational brain skills that make relationships work. With a combination of teaching and exercises, Chris Coursey will look at how to best design your fellowship times around how God designed your brain to work best – in joyful community.

Chris Coursey will introduce a number of useful brain skills your small group can use to increase joy, deepen capacity and equip people to be protectors in their communities. Chris will highlight how small groups can be the avenue where hindrances that keep us from building a secure group identity are removed.

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Building Better Community | Strengthening Your Relational Muscles Together

There’s no doubt that living in community can be very challenging – even when we find a group of people that we like! Most people don’t have the “relational muscles” to work through conflict when it arises, so they simply leave the group. In this session, we’ll cover how simple exercises to build your relational muscles can transform your group’s experience.

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Why You Should NOT Create a Safe Environment

Most of us tend to naturally think that one of our goals for small groups should be to create a ‘safe’ environment. In this talk, Dr. Jim Wilder will make a case for why making a ‘safe’ environment may actually hinder the transformation we seek. While of course we need to ensure that group members are protected, there is another way to do so beyond creating a ‘safe’ group – and that is to cultivate a protective group identity. Dr. Wilder will unpack the ideas that the human brain is designed to long for 1) belonging in a 2) peaceful 3) protective 4) joyful 5) group of people. The Life Model is centered around achieving these purposes. Learn how you can form groups that are “protective” and foster sustainable and scalable transformation.

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Makers in a Thinkers World

To be creative is to make meaning. This presentation will explore what it’s like to transformationally embrace God’s creativity in our lives. All transformation happens in the context of relationship, so together we will consider how “it takes your whole brain to be holy.” Amy will share about her own formational experiences as a maker in a thinkers world, and what that has meant in my journey to becoming more like Jesus. Each person will be encouraged to explore God’s creative language in their own life, and to engage the potential that language may have to help them more joyfully connect with God and others.

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Applying the Life Model in our Healing Ministries

Be inspired as leaders from several ministries describe how the Life Model is bringing transformation to hearts and lives and creating a joy-epicenter in their city through the ministries of their churches and counseling centers. Through teaching classes on relational skills, by fostering multi-generational community, and by removing blockages to maturity through healing, these ladies are seeing more and more people begin to live out of the heart that Jesus gave them.

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Spreading the Life Model

This breakout will be a followup to the Spreading the Life Model panel. The purpose is to encourage, equip, and challenge participants to think creatively about how to spread the Life Model in their unique context. Margaret Webb will facilitate discussion and stories by those finding ways to share the elements of the Life Model that have impacted their life and relationships.

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Journey Groups

In 2016, Amy developed “Journey Groups” to provide and build community for those who wanted to deepen their skills for relationships with God and people, especially where local groups are not available. Journey Groups are online small groups which meet weekly by video to learn “sticky love” (hesed), maturity, relational skills, and practice God’s presence together. Tremendous transformation has occurred over the past 2 years, and Amy is delighted to share with you more about Journey Groups and how you can get involved.

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Church Planter, Pastor

Tom Anthony married Cami in 1991, and they have eight children (plus three “in-laws”). Tom has served in vocational ministry for twenty-seven years as a church planter, senior pastor, neighborhood pastor, and executive pastor. He currently serves on the senior staff with Max Lucado at Oak Hills Church in San Antonio. He is also the co-founder of the Neighborhood Collective, a national gathering of like-minded practitioners in the area of loving neighbors. Tom has been instrumental in implementing some of the life model exercises through over 300 small groups at Oak Hills Church. During his free time, he likes to read, walk, play sports, and hang out with family and neighbors.

Director of Relational Networks, Life Model Works

Michael Sullivant is the Director of Relational Networks for Life Model Works. He is a church planter, pastor, author, poet and speaker. He has ministered in over 25 countries through over 40 years of public ministry. Michael and his wife, Terri, have 5 adult and married children and a growing number of grandchildren. His latest book is Thinking Biblically About the Life Model. Terri, recently published her first book, The Divine Invitation – Entering the Dance of Becoming Fully Alive.

Michael is involved with ministry and church leaders and change agents who are seeking to integrate more relational approaches to helping people in their groups mature and experience deeper and lasting identity transformation into the image of Jesus Christ.

Therapist, Spiritual Director

Sungshim Loppnow is a marriage and family therapist and a spiritual director. Her passion is to help people cultivate a deep, authentic and life-giving relationship with God. She is especially called to support leaders to live out Jesus’ new commandment (John 13:34) in their marriage, parenting, family and friendships. Her background in the study of Christian Education equipped her with the skills to develop simple tools like Immanuel Journaling (IJ) in 2011. IJ was introduced in the book, Joyful Journey in 2015 and has helped many people into a profound experience with God’s love. She has been teaching Life Model concepts and training others in Immanuel Journaling in homes, churches and parachurch organizations internationally. She and her husband John have been running an Immanuel Journaling Practice every Monday in La Crescenta, CA. This is their laboratory to deepen their practice of brain skills and the Immanuel Lifestyle. John & Sungshim have two children, Zachariah (11) and Zoe (9).

Small Group Leader

Laura is a stay-at-home mom in San Antonio, TX with her husband of 11 years and two kids. Laura loves tea, shopping, and sitting with her neighbor-moms outside watching the kids play. Laura loves to encourage women on their path to deeper relationship with Jesus and others. Two years ago, Laura led a Joyful Journey book study with her neighbors and friends that transformed her life. She experienced the interactive presence of Jesus and authentic community. Currently, Laura gathers women for Immanuel Journaling nights and peace practice where they interact with Jesus and practice the relational skills.

Founder, Alive and Well, Inc.

Margaret Webb devoted herself to a ministry of emotional healing and maturation in the context of prayer. Margaret has studied with and learned from Dr. Jim Wilder, Dr. Karl Lehman, Chris and Jen Coursey, and Ed Khouri for the past 10 years, and it has changed her personal life as well as her ministry career. Using what she learned from these leaders, as well as her experience as a Christian Counselor, she created the Alive and Well, Inc. curriculum for leading people into the Immanuel Lifestyle and preparing prayer ministers to use the Immanuel Approach. Teaching, training, mentoring and consulting, she is committed to the vision of a network of lay and professional people-helpers bringing the care of souls into the local church. Her website is

CEO of Life Model Works

Jim Martini is the CEO of Life Model Works. He currently resides in Los Angeles, California with his wife Michele. Jim Martini is passionate about equipping a contagious body of Christ that can change the world.

Jim has known Dr. Jim Wilder for almost 30 years. Prior to his role as CEO, Jim served for 8 years on the Life Model Works Board of Directors.

One of Jim’s first Immanuel moments was a time when he was discerning his vocation as a young man. Despite his heart for evangelism and missions, he heard a clear call from God to marry, have children and support God’s people thorough a business career.

Jim has been married to Michele for over 30 years. They have 2 children. Mario traveled the world to record the Jesus Film in new languages and now does Campus Ministry with CRU at USC.  Luisa is on staff at her church in the Dallas area.

Jim’s business career has spanned the spectrum from owning several businesses to serving for 8 years as the national account manager to a very large healthcare organization, Kaiser Permanente, on behalf of $60 billion company, Siemens.

Teacher, Prayer Minister

Rosalind Hervey is a teacher and prayer minister at Christ Healing Center in San Antonio, Texas. She spent 25 years as a teacher in both private and public schools from elementary school through high school. After leaving teaching, she became a small group pastor with a particular interest in combining healing prayer with the healing community environment of small groups. She is a trained Life Coach, and has been coaching churches, ministries and healing centers since 2007. Her favorite aspect of that coaching is helping groups of people discover their corporate, God-given identity through a process that is both systematic and dynamic. She and her husband, Lance Elliott, live in San Antonio and have a son in Austin and a daughter, son-in-law, and two granddaughters in the Chicago area.

Director of Spanish Ministries for Rapha God Ministries

Laura has been involved different prayer ministries since 2002 and became the Director of Spanish Ministries for Rapha God Ministries in 2012 where she currently serves. Over the past six years she has learned about the principles of Life Model Works and experienced sustainable transformation in her own life. As a result, she has incorporated the concepts into prayer sessions and training within the ministry. Later this year plans are to take these concepts to pastors in Guatemala together with Oak Hills Church. She enjoys witnessing the healing work of Jesus Christ in prayer sessions and teaching people the skills to live out their healing and ongoing transformation into the likeness of Christ. She lives in San Antonio along with her husband and two sons.

Church Planter

Jan has assisted in planting two Vineyard churches in San Antonio. She currently serves on the Senior Pastor’s Council and as Prayer Ministries Coordinator for Mission Vineyard Church of San Antonio. Her passion is to enable people to experience being known by God personally, not just know about Him. She and Michael have been married for 34 years. Their daughter and son-in-love live in Redding, CA.

Leadership Team Member, Oak Hills

Greg L. Hawkins is the former executive pastor of Willow Creek Community Church, where he served alongside Bill Hybels for over twenty years. He currently serves with Max Lucado and Randy Frazee on the leadership team at Oak Hills Church in San Antonio, Texas. Prior to joining the staff of Willow Creek, Hawkins was a management consultant with McKinsey & Company. Greg and his wife live in the Texas hill country with their three children.

Lay Leaders

Ramie Miller is trained as a Manufacturing Engineer and Continuous Improvement Professional, and gets excited about fostering excellence in teams of people – both in the workplace and in the neighborhood. Raised in rural Western New York State, Ramie married native Texan Vanessa in 2004. Shortly thereafter the couple made their way to San Antonio.

Vanessa Miller has a knack for linking others within the neighborhood and is passionate about building multi-cultural and multi-generational communities. Grateful for the opportunity to stay-at-home, Vanessa uses her time to relationally connect and partner with those on the fringes. Their children David and Katie are currently in the 5th and 3rdgrade.

For the past eleven years, Vanessa and Ramie have slowly deepened their roots in Braun Station, a suburban neighborhood on San Antonio’s northwest side. In collaboration with Oak Hills, they help to lead a small community of believers in their neighborhood. In the last year, the group has been experimenting with the integration of Immanuel Prayer and the 19 relational brain skills into the life of their multigenerational community.

Dave Mead

CEO of WeAlign

Be assured that Dave Mead is glad to be with you! Dave has been on staff with the Navigators for 31 years working on college campuses, Military installations, overseas, and as a Vice President overseeing the Navigator Military ministries. Currently, he is on the national leadership team of Nav Neighbors. He also had a 31 year career in the Army (23 years in the Reserves). He would say that he began to engage the right side of his brain a year ago at Thrive…and everything has changed! Now Dave wants to joyfully spend his next 31 years living out the Life Model. He is CEO of WeAlign, a coaching firm committed to personal transformation by guiding people to their unique design within a culture focused on strengths and fueled by joy. Dave holds a Bachelor of Science Degree from the United States Military Academy and a Masters of Strategic Studies Degree from the U.S. Army War College.


President of Deeper Walk International

Dr. Marcus Warner is the president of Deeper Walk International. He is the author of several books including his most recent work Rare Leadership (with Dr. Jim Wilder), Understanding the Wounded Heart, and What Every Believer Should Know About Spiritual Warfare. A former pastor and Bible Professor (Bethel College). Marcus has done training for Moody Church, Willow Creek Prison Ministry, Navigators and Oak Hills Church. He has also appeared on national radio programs such as Chris Fabry Live and Gary Chapman’s “Building Relationships. His specialty is taking the complex and making it easy to understand, remember and apply.

Counselor, Author

Chris Coursey has spent most of his ministry career applying and developing strategies for Life Model training. Chris is a pastoral counselor, leadership consultant, published author, and conference speaker. He speaks nationally and internationally, frequently visiting schools, ministries and churches throughout the United States and Canada in particular on growing and propagating relational joy. He has been a guest speaker at YWAM schools in Kona, Vancouver and New Jersey. He has also been an interview guest on several Christian radio shows in the US, speaking about the role that Gentle Protector Skills have for couples, leaders and pastors. Along with Dr. Jim Wilder, Chris co-authored Share Immanuel and The Healing Lifestyle. Dr. Wilder and Coursey also developed THRIVE Training, which are three interactive training tracks strategically designed for leaders to learn and spread the nineteen gentle protector skills. Along with his wife Jen, Chris now actively leads THRIVE Training events along with THRIVE Joy Rekindled Marriage Retreats, THRIVE Reach Your Potential with Joy weekend retreats, and seminars designed to equip leaders and pastors in the Nineteen Gentle Protector Skills with the Share Immanuel Lifestyle.

Chris earned his Associates Degree from Illinois Central College in 1995. In 1998, he transferred to Eastern Illinois State University to earn his B.A. in Sociology, with a minor in Psychology. Chris earned his M.T. from M.B.I. Yeshiva in Hampton, Virginia in 2007. Chris is an ordained minister with the Evangelical Church Alliance. Chris is currently the assistant director for Shepherd’s House, Inc. under the mentorship of Dr. Jim Wilder.


Charlotte Lehman, M.Div. is extremely grateful to have been shaped by the strong and loving multi-generational community of Jesus’ followers at Reba Place Church (RPC) of Evanston, IL. In 2009, she became Lead Pastor and has been having an awesome adventure in learning the art of leadership ever since.

She attributes much of her success in life and ministry to an Immanuel Lifestyle and the 19-Relational Brain Skills taught by Life Model Works. Charoltte has enjoyed seeing Reba Place Church thrive in the application of these principles to its congregational life!

Charlotte is married to Dr. Karl Lehman, a Christian, psychiatrist and leader in the field of faith-based emotional healing, and author of The Immanuel Approach.


Founder of Burning Heart Workshops

Amy Pierson is the founder of Burning Heart Workshops, and former executive director of the Spiritual Formation Alliance. She is a 2014 graduate of the Renovate Institute for Christian Spiritual Formation/Santa Barbara Cohort. Amy received her Bachelor of Science degree in Journalism and Advertising from the University of Colorado, Boulder and now lives in the Denver area with her husband, Bill, and a ridiculous but sincere golden retriever. As an empty-nester mom of daughters, Whitney and Haley, she writes, speaks, gathers and enjoys making things with other creative souls.

Author, Consultant

Amy is a content developer, trainer, and consultant on staff with Alive & Well, Inc. As consultant, she creates monthly training events for the Online Practice Community with THRIVEtoday, creates training materials for Life Model Works, and leads the Certified Journey Group Leadership Community with Deeper Walk International. She co-authored the book Relational Skills in the Bible with Chris Coursey, and wrote the Journey Group curriculum. She is a relational skills trainer with THRIVEtoday.

Founder Life Model Works

Dr. Jim Wilder has been training leaders and counselors for over 30 years on five continents. Jim grew up in South America and is bilingual (English/Spanish). He is the author of nineteen books with a strong focus on maturity and relational skills. His coauthored book, Living from the Heart Jesus Gave You, has sold over 100,000 copies and is printed in eleven languages. Wilder has published numerous articles and developed four sets of video and relational leadership training. Dr. Wilder has served as a guest lecturer at Fuller Seminary, Biola, Talbot Seminary, Point Loma University, Montreat College, Tyndale Seminary and elsewhere.