Archive for April, 2017

For Churches: It is not what you believe so much as what you love

Friday, April 21st, 2017

Brian McLaren nailed it…

For churches: it is not what you believe so much as what you love.

Churches tend to start with a list of beliefs.  From that comes the idea that our role is to share those beliefs.  Connected, our job – to hold tightly to our beliefs as overtly distinctive in all ways, and like it or not, superior to the beliefs held by others.

While beliefs are important – clearly important, critically important – beliefs are not the end game. To think of them as such is to confuse the ‘boat with the distant shore.’

What matters in the end is what we love.  Imagine starting there.  Beginning in a sense at the end. A statement not of beliefs but a statement of what we, as a church, love.

For NewChurch LIVE, I would humbly offer what I most witness is two loves.  Connection. Service.

What is it for your church?

Important answers. As those loves wind together, we find joy…

We are not made happy by the true things believe from our faith, but from goodness that comes from faith. (Secrets of Heaven, 4984)


The Issue is Imagination

Thursday, April 13th, 2017

The issue is imagination.

The issue is moving beyond cherished and long serving ways of doing things, and finding in the process, newness. A newness connected to the old and at the same time reaching for the new.

That remains the challenges for many institutions.  And for churches seeking to serve in new ways.

What we need to ask, continually, is how are we keeping score and how are we telling our story.

The story is good.  Beautiful. And matters.

Matters so much in fact that we need to remain open and imaginative about how we tell it.

Neither do people pour new wine into old wineskins. If they do, the skins will burst; the wine will run out and the wineskins will be ruined. No, they pour new wine into new wineskins, and both are preserved. (Matt. 9:17)



The Challenge to Live as a Christian

Friday, April 7th, 2017

The challenge to live as a Christian is not the challenge of converting others. It is not the challenge of living a morally impeccable life.  Or perfect children. Or the perfect marriage. Or growing the perfect church.

The challenge remains …. to see and act into the world differently.  Quietly.  Humbly. “Dwelling in littleness.”  With courage.

To love our friends and our enemies.  To pray for both.

To turn the other cheek.  Not in subjugation but to honor the stubborn, timeless demands of agapé love that keep us face-to-face, toe-to-toe with the other.

To go the extra mile regardless of who asks.  Sharing the load regardless of person.

To take the stands that matter.

Important we continually return to those words.  These concepts.  This way of living.  This challenge.