Monday, June 23, 2008

Is Missional the New Emergent?

I just read an excellent article by Alan Hirsch (author of The Shaping of Things to Come; The Forgotten Ways). I thought he did an excellent job of articulating the difference between a missional church and an emerging / emergent church. I, for one, am glad he's helping to delineate between the two. It would be easy for people to make inferences about The Well (or any other missional church) because they assume we're an emerging church. And while I don't have anything against the emergent movement, there are definitely things about it that are controversial--and in ways that I (and The Well) don't wish to be controversial.

Anyway, click here to go to his site and read Hirsch's brief article. Enjoy!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Re/defining Christian

The Well's summer book club is under way and tonight we have another discussion. In case you missed my last post, we're reading through a book by Hugh Halter and Matt Smay called, "The Tangible Kingdom." I wanted to share a thought from the book with you:

" I'm sitting at a Starbucks in the final week of editing this book, I just took a break to talk to a guy named Don. Don grew up in a non-practicing Catholic home, watched his father convert to a Seventh-Day Adventist tradition, but only remembers the types of meat he couldn't eat. His wife hates the idea of God, and Don's already expressed his love of God but his disdain for organized church. Since he seemed open to talk, I lobbed up this question, 'If Christianity was only about finding a group of people to live life with, who shared openly their search for God and allowed anyone, regardless of behavior, to seek too, and who collectively lived by faith to make the world a little more like Heaven, would you be interested?'

'Hell yes!' was the reply. He continued. 'Are there churches like that?'"

What do you think about the author's description for church and Christianity? Could it be that we've taken something that is supposed to be so simple and exponentially complicated it? If Christianity really were this real, this simple, this communal, do you think people would respond as Don did?

Friday, June 6, 2008

The Tangible Kingdom

Hey bloggerites…Sorry I haven’t blogged in awhile. There’s been a lot going on. Let me bring you up to speed. Actually, I’ll give you the short version:

Through a series of events (which I believe is nothing short of an answer to my prayers), I was put in contact with a couple of guys named Hugh Halter and Matt Smay. These guys are missional church planters in Denver. They also operate an organization called Missio and just finished writing a book called, “The Tangible Kingdom.” (Click here to visit the website for the book). Their book chronicles their adventures in church planting: missional style! Well, the book is excellent and I think every Christ follower should read it. More on the book in a minute.

In the meantime, I signed up for a course that Hugh and Matt offer called the MCAP (Missional Church Apprenticeship Practicum). This is a 9 month course that involves weekly video lectures and interaction with a cohort of 15 other missional church planters from around the country. So far it’s been really great. It’s very encouraging to see that there are other guys out there wrestling through the same challenges that I am.

But, anyway, the book is so good that we’re buying copies for everybody at The Well and we’re going to read through it together this summer. We’ll have dinner and discussion about the book every Tuesday night. If anybody out there is interested in joining us, let me know! Otherwise, go get the book, read it, and let me know what you think! What Hugh and Matt have developed with their church is inspirational. It’s the church our culture needs and the church I pray The Well becomes.