“It’s been said that “leadership is best caught not taught.” There’s of course a few lessons about leadership we can pick up from a lecture or conference. But these tend to focus on the outward aspects of leadership that get too much airtime—the methodology, the look, the 10 steps. The inward stuff of leaders, without question, must be caught. You can’t just be lectured to about humility, authenticity, brokenness, honesty, integration, wholeness. These things must be modeled. The best teachers of leadership, therefore, take their students past the classroom and invite them on a journey of discovery, where they are compelled to go deeper and explore the crevasses and caverns of their soul. These teachers can make this invitation because it’s a journey they themselves have undertaken many times. Jon Warden is preeminently this kind of teacher. He is one of the best instructors I know who actually journeys with students, and not just teach at them.” (Regarding Jon’s leading pastors on exploring their brokenness in a mentoring modular for pastors)

Dihan Lee
Associate Pastor of Grace Covenant Church
Lead Planter of Renew Church LA


“Jon’s work with the students in our chapter is analogous to an expert surgeon. He knows exactly what our students need in order to be a more healthy disciple of Jesus and knows exactly where to make the precise cuts. He lets us bleed just enough to get rid of the poison and then graciously introduces who Jesus is in a way that binds the wound and gives glory to God. He knows how to lead students into difficult places and cares enough to show students the light of Jesus. He is a fearless speaker, knowing that his words will cut deep, but knowing that the healing of Jesus is worth it. He is also thorough and accommodating, doing what is necessary in order to fulfill the call that God has given him in any given retreat or conference setting. I would highly recommend him to any group that needs to experience the deep healing of Jesus.”
HC Yang
Campus Staff Member
Northwestern University InterVarsity


Last fall (September) we invited Jon to visit our community and spend a weekend teaching material from his newly released book, “Resisting Grace”. Jon facilitated a three day retreat (Fri pm – Sun am) where he taught four times, but also made himself available for appointments on Saturday afternoon.

Jon is a creative and life-giving teacher. Sharing from deep encounters with Jesus throughout his life of suffering and struggle, Jon painted for us through visuals, through hands on exercises, through personal story and Scripture, a vivid and compelling picture of God’s grace that has left a lasting imprint on those who attended the weekend. Jon offered us helpful paradigms around words like brokenness and resistance that gave us language to talk with each other about why we struggle to experience and receive the grace of God. We are thankful for our time with Jon and highly recommend him to any community looking to grow in their understanding of God and His marvelous grace.

Joshua Koh
Congregational Pastor
Vancouver Chinese Alliance Church (Canada)


moanalua gardens

Hey Jon,

Thanks so much again for speaking to my students. I was ministered to very powerfully, as well, as your teaching helped challenge deep-seated shame and brokenness in my own life, too.

I’ve included some messages below from students thanking you, as well!

Eve- Thank you so much for being so open and vulnerable with us. Your love of your daughter, family, us, and God was clearly shown to us. Your wisdom from your struggles inspired many of us to take a look at our shame and not sulk in it but rejoice in the lessons it has taught us and the beauty that can come from it. Basically, thank you so much for taking the time out of your busy schedule to spend quality time with us over a short weekend. We learned a lot!

Jessi- thank you for being different than any other speaker we’ve had before, and for making us sit in our brokenness so that we could seek out God’s work, and love, and grace in all aspects of our lives. your deep love and creativity was truly inspiring.God bless

Daniel- Thanks for challenging us (me for sure) to engage with our brokenness in a way that makes us aware of it. It was an incredible weekend to be able to bond as a community of broken people. May God bless you and your family…in brightest day, and blackest night. #CORPSforCHRIST

Amber Kim- Thank you Jon for sharing understandings that God showed you with us. God truly used your words as an answer to prayer – for AAIV’s community and for myself personally. Thank you for being creative and choosing to go with not the norm of retreats. I believe our God is a creative God and He definitely used your mind to show us that! One last thing, thank you for sharing with us the incredible godly love you have for your daughter and wife. May you and your family be continually blessed to bless others!

Loua- Thank you Jon for challenging me to continue to grow in my faith. Specifically, reminding me of my brokenness and how God’s persisting grace continues to redeem us over and over again. Your message and the vulnerability you showed us at this retreat made it so much more valuable to me this year. Thanks.

Michael- I must say, Jon, your story definitely got to me. Some of the things that you have gone through are similar to my worries for the future. It was nice to see someone who has been through those issues and seems to be doing pretty well in the end. Your messages definitely challenged me, and I am still working on processing and wrestling with some of the questions and challenges. You were definitely a GREAT speaker, and I hope we meet sometime again. Prayers for you and your family, and I hope life treats you well! God bless!

Cathy- Jon, thank you for opening my eyes to hidden brokeness and sharing lessons, both biblical and personal. Your vulnerable sharing made your teachings all the more genuine and made me reflect on my own character. I confronted some scars, and also found healing. We as his people may constantly battle with shame, but in God there is grace that always redeems. Again, thank you so SO much for all that you have done. I truly hope we have the chance to meet again.

Amanda- Hi Jon, Thank you so much for giving up your time to come and share God’s word with all of us. Truly, through this retreat, I have learned of my brokenness and shame and was truly ashamed of them. I am reminded that God’s grace overshadows what pain I may be going through. I thank God for speaking through you to us to show us that we are broken somehow but because of His love for us, we are redeemed. I am so touched by your genuine faith and love for God, as well as for your daughter. May God continue to bless you and your family just as you were a blessing to all of us.

Aimee Brown Hi Jon It’s always great to dive into God’s word, but I think it’s really great is to see how it’s lived out. Not many people are willing to put themselves out there and be vulnerable in their weaknesses. I’m really thankful for how you were able to demonstrate your openness to God’s will, even through the struggles and brokenness of life, and was encouraged in hearing your perspective of persistent grace. Glad we got to share this weekend with you. Thank you!

This email came the day before Christmas and touched me. It humbles me to think people are impacted. I thank God for the grace and privilege of writing Resisting Grace.


I just received an email from my aunt in California – the one that I sent a copy of your book to. She is a Christian…one of only a few on my dad’s side. I had to copy her thoughts of your book for you.

I’ve read the book and I love every chapter in it. I say it’s “thought-provoking” but what I find to be amazing is that, Jon’s thoughts on paper are beyond…oh, I don’t know the words to describe it…every page flows with ease from one “grace” to another. How does one begin to write on such an amazing subject?! My eyes have been opened by this book and I keep searching my mind who I could share it with…give as a gift. I believe all Christians should read it but then, again, many are not readers (so sad…sigh…). Better yet…it would be a great Bible Study.

So, note from my aunt: Get working on the companion Bible Study guide to go with the book!!!! (your next project)
Meanwhile, she will be busy thinking who she can share the book with!

Thanks so much for a thoughtful and thought-provoking book. I need to reread the entire book, as I was only able to read parts of it (had too much reading for my Masters program), when I first got it.

Merry Christmas to all! I’ll send Joelle a thank you – but I was so surprised to receive a copy of her book!!! Such a sweetie! That’s on my must read list too.

Btw I’ve really enjoyed your book, Jon. I will be going thru it with one guy I am mentoring here (our youth pastor) and am contemplating what other ways I can use it. Your framework for cooperating w God is so helpful. Thanks.

Allen M.Wakabayashi Pastor @ TCBC Midtown

Just wanted to let you know that I am enjoying Resisting Grace as my devotional reading on my Metra commute to work these days. It’s been a thought and faith-provoking read and reflection that I am savoring slowly as well as catching glimpses and close-up details of your journey and that of others. Hope to be able to write an Amazon review when I am done. Have mentioned it to my small group. I am privileged and blessed to read and enjoy your Holy Spirit-inspired and powered handiwork on this end!
Most of all, I am deeply moved by what you have written. I told Al that you come from a theological M.Div. training pastorate background combined with practicing as a Christian counselor then add to that deep multicultural knowledge and experience and then, your personal journey and those you have walked alongside personally and professionally to bring these truths and concepts to light and life with poignancy and an abundance of grace! I’m also glad you are wired to think about such things conceptually and pulling it all together–as someone who is not theologically trained, I’m really glad you are pulling these various areas together to illuminate some of the hows of living by faith and grace. Today I read about breakthrough, beauty, and the grind of life. I know my Metra commute isn’t adequate time to reflect on any of the chapters so far and it will take me awhile to reflect and likely, my lifetime.
Thanks for the gift of your writing, sharing, integrating, reflecting. Beautiful handiwork, my friend and brother.

Dr. Diane L.S. Lin, Psychologist

Over the past couple days, I made it through a handful more chapters and am almost done. It really has been refreshing and insightful for me. Your writing has a great blend of being rich/in-depth/theological and also accessible and practical. I really like how you walk through the Gideon story. The progression of experiencing God’s grace through the different movements is so helpful and unique… I’ll write more when I’m finished, but it has been the best Christian book that I’ve read in a while.
It truly is a GREAT book. Thanks be to God!
Thanks for letting God use your gifts through writing this book…

Jared Ahrens, Pastor Harvest Community Church


5.0 out of 5 stars Letting God’s Grace Transform You! February 13, 2013
By J. Mark Andersen
Format:Paperback|Amazon Verified Purchase
Mr. Warden uncovers how God uses grace to transform us into the people he has called us to be. He explains six types of grace (Illuminating, Awakening, Determining, Deconstructing, Empowering, and Trancending), how we naturally resist them, and how to overcome our resistance to each. Through solid biblical teaching (using the story of Gideon as an example), his experience as a counselor and a small group leader, and lessons he has learned through his family, Mr. Warden gives an illuminating and practical approach to understanding how we can tap into the power of God’s grace as we journey down the path of our sanctification and ultimately to be glorified in His presence.

I heartily recommend this book to Christians who desire to grow through God’s grace.

Resisting Grace is an insightful book that requires you to delve into the very core of your faith. You are given the opportunity to wrestle with God about everything that you’ve swept under the rug for so long. Dive in with an open mind and an open heart!
Theresa Mathew
Teacher, Kelly High School

Like the Holy Spirit, Jon Warden comes alongside the broken-hearted and takes down our defensive and unhealthy thoughts that hinder us from recognizing Jesus Christ’s work in us. As insightful as it is applicable, Resisting Grace teaches us how to examine our hearts and work with, not against, the Holy Spirit. A book to be read, shared, and read again and again as we grow and mature.
Joelle Hong
Lawyer, Mother

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