Monday, November 10, 2014
Making the activities of Christian mission central is subtly distinct from making Christ Himself central.That's a fair complain about just about any latest program to come to the church in just about any department. I want to talk about buzzwords generally - they are a substitute for learning and change. Using buzzwords implies knowledge where you in fact may have none. Buzzwords imply that you have done something well, when in fact you may not have at all.
In the midst of all this missional hubbub, I wonder if we have forgotten Jesus.
Example from woodworking - I have made what looks to be the most beautiful cut on a piece of wood, perfectly square, no chips, just lovely - right up until the time I try to fit that piece with the other piece. The small imperfection in the other piece now make my "perfect" cut look far from perfect. Instead of focusing on making my cut perfect and my measurements abstractly correct on a tape measure, I needed to measure against what it was going to fit to and cut that way. When you are building a church, focusing on one thing, as summarized in a buzzword, can result in a pretty ugly church.
Genuine church building has to look at the whole thing and make what is needed with precision. At church may need to focus more on mission, but what is needed precisely cannot be summed up in a buzzword. It has to fit what is going on at that church, all the while remembering you are not there to build a mission, but a whole church and all aspects of that church.