Saturday, March 15, 2008

My Vision For This Blog

I will try to sum this up and keep it short. Earlier this year I read a book called Kingdom of Couches written by an author that is on staff with Cru. It was a book about having a communal faith and living out your relationship with God in the context of people or a community. Throughout the book the author included excerpts from a blog he had with some of his good friends, some of which were pastors. They would just share things that God was teaching them and present questions as well. More recently I have been listening to a lot of sermons from a lot of different pastors (Mark Driscoll, Francis Chan, Tom Nelson, John Piper, Tim Keller). The sermons have brought up lots of things that I have and would like to continue to discuss.

So with this blog I would love to have some guys like Tim, Chad, Neal, maybe Greg, and some other "more elder" leaders at church be apart of this. With a good number of people involved in this it would keep it fresh and updated and give something to read and think about regularly. It would give us all something to challenge our walks with God by being able to ask questions present ideas or new thoughts from things in our life to things with the church. This might sound like emergent church kind of stuff (which I have been learning about) but its not because we aren't going to be questioning theology. This is also a good way to have a check and balance to things that we listen to online and things that we might be reading.


Terry said...

Interesting title Kingdom of Couches - I take it to mean they are talking about living room kind of faith - getting involved in others lives. There will come a day again when the church will be scattered and persecuted here in the US. The Chinese church is meeting in houses because they cannot otherwise. Here we have the freedom to meet and because of that our faith is not tested. I do have some concerns with the emergent church and the house church movement -- they are beginning to say if you don't do it like they do it you are wrong. Barna's latest book "Pagan Christianity" trys to link all of our current traditions to pagan practices. My take is he has gone beyond a researcher and demographer and is now using his findings to make a case as to way the house church is the way to go.

That said many of us in leadership have recognized our lack of relationships in CBC and understand we are missing that piece. You'll be seeing some movement towards small groups and an encouragement to have neighborhood groups that will involve into Bible studies. The probelm always comes down to the busyness of this area so we have to find other ways to make those relationships -- like in the stands at a high school or youth sporting event that leads to a golf date or BBQ or a Nat's game.

We have recognized we need someone with the ideas and planning to put those opportunities before us -- that's why we have pastoral staff with the skill sets to think up these things.

Finally we have to break out of our old traditions of doing church but still handle it in a way that those older than even me are brought along. They (and even my generation) need to be willing to turn loose of our songs; our methods; our ways of doing church and turn it over to you guys. My challenge to you is: what would you do different? Many times we simply focus on our morning service and how that is structured. I would hazzard to guess there wouldn't be much different to what you would do based on a Cru meeting. (and as I said we are moving towards the small group and accountability in the next year or so). I think we can see a change on when that meeting is held and being more intentional in other events. One of the issues of moving beyond what the older folks are comfortable with is the money aspect -- they for the most part are supporting the missions of the church and its unfortunate that they would use that as a means of control. Maybe we shouldn't care about that -- maybe if more of that happened their true motivation would be revealed. Its the same motivation that affects all of us -- What's In It For Me. our selfishness continues to rear its ugly head. It was Satan's original sin and ours too.

ok that should get the discussion going..

Richie said...

After hearing that I will very likely change the name of this blog to emphasize it's focus. Feel free to make suggestions.

Terry said...

well you just changed the name and that's cool. need to invite others to the discussion. Thought I would try to weave in how something like Katherine's theatre group could be another springboard to get people involved. Another non-threatening event and perhaps coffee after the show kind of thing - intentionality...

Stevie said...

I think it would be good to create another post with the question you asked....what would you do different? That way it stays focused for each topic or question.

As far as the emergent church. I know they are crazy and questioning things like is homosexuality really wrong or could someone still be a christian if Jesus had a biological father. So I know they are crazy but like I said the idea of questioning the practices is ok. I really have so much to throw out there and discuss that I don't know where to start.

Chad Kreider said...

This blog will be very interesting. The cause of keeping each other sharp and engaged in the development of ourselves and our church is a noble one (Prov 27:17). One of the issues with the emergent church is that ideas get thrown out there, get chewed up like cud, and come out a totally different creature than when it began. Our focus is different. We are not trying to redefine Christianity. We are not trying to make Christianity relevant. The gospel is already relevant in and of itself. As long as the word is the basis for our ideas and we go back to it as the foundation of all that we do, with prayer, God will do through us what he promised to do through us with his spirit.

I think it'd be great if we all prayed now at the start of this blog that's God's will would be done and his spirit would move through our lips (or, our 10 fingers).

Happy Blogging!

Terry said...

Preach the gospel to all the world, and if necessary, use words. -st. francis of assisi

Were passengers aboard the train
Silent little lambs amidst the pain
Thats no longer good enough
And when its time to speak our faith
We use a language no one can explain
Thats no longer good enough

And God knows its a shame
As we look to pass the flame
We are not the worthy bearers of his name


For the world to know the truth
There can be no greater proof
Than to live the life, live the life
Theres no love thats quite as pure
Theres no pain we cant endure
If we live the life, live the life
Be a light for all to see
For every act of love will set you free

Theres something beautiful and bold
The power of a million human souls
Come together as one
And each in turn goes out to lead
Another by his word, his love, his deed
Now the circle is done

It all comes back to one
For it is he and he alone
Who has lived the only perfect life we've known

The lyric "million souls" I believe was in reference to Stand in the Gap. Promise Keepers started off great and still does good work but the thrill has worn off. Some guys have continued on with their small groups and such but for the vast majority of men it fell by the wayside. Maybe the form of accountability and study could be a ball game together or round of golf when you can just chat and share there? I mean look at the response we have for men's fellowship breakfast. I hate as much as the next guy, getting up on a saturday morning and going. And we balk at group prayer at these because we're not comfortable. So we've changed the format - eat; lesson and discussion and go.

Also not everybody can be everybody's friend or in their peer group but how do you care for the "least of these" or the parts of the body that are undesirable?

Greg said...

I'm glad to see Terry's comment that CBC will be moving towards small groups. It seems that the Crossroads ABF is working for that group, but if you serve on Sunday morning (and we hope more will), then a Sunday morning meeting time is not going to work. Besides, I think small groups are more effective in less formal settings.