20050128

tensions

i will be leading a few labs at soularize this march and i have been giving some thought concerning some of the issues facing us as a conversation. i like the way it is expressed by spencer (over at the ooze) that "kingdom in tension with conversions," and that "community in tension with corporation," and that "rhythm in tension with schedule." the idea that there is tension between what we think God is wanting of us and what humans are demanding of "their" church is a wonderful thing. think about it, we can see the tension, feel the tension and best of all we can "know" the tension. let me share with you how i see some aspects of the tensions

kingdom in tension with conversions:
briefly i envision this as a tension between kingdom growth and church growth. some moderns would say that they are one in the same, but i wonder if that is truly the case. the idea that churches are concerned with their "conversion count" as if it was a number they could record.

community in tension with corporation:
this tension i see as the tension between being a family or a business (and in some churches, a "family business"). this tension is when we thing in terms of business and what is important to the "organization" and not the people involved. i see this as being more concerned with the liabilities of handing out a sandwich and handing out a sandwich.

rhythm in tension with schedule:
each and every person "plans a day." heck, i live with my palm and have a "schedule" that i live by. yet my nature is to "go with the flow" and see the possibilities and the expression of my faith.

i would love to hear what you think about each of these tensions. you can email me, comment here or comment in community. either way, what you think is important. and over the next month or so as i think, read and pray over these areas i will be posting, writing and expressing my thoughts in these areas.

2 comments:

Michael said...

I like what you said about the tension between being a Church Family and a Cooperation. That is one of the reasons why I left a church of a thousand plus to attend a church much smaller. I live in a city that has approximately 90 churches, some of them of very big. Within three of the larger churches this last year were splits, which resulted in three new churches being planted. Someone at work told me that they thought Satan was attacking the local churches by trying to break up the church families. But I don’t see it that way. I see it as the end of the big Production, mass population church, because people have realized that they need authentic community. They want to be apart of a family, not just a number. They want the pastor and others to know their name. They want connection; I am not sure how a large Cooperate Church can offer that very effectively.

Though I have to say, smaller churches are not any better at offering community and connection.

bodyelectric said...

I have a lengthy comment on this post at:

http://anythingbutmediocrity.blogspot.com/2005/02/response-to-tensions.html

Feel free to respond in part. Thank you John for your good questions.