Some of Parkview’s staff went to a conference last week called “Exponential” (BTW – a few pics of the PCC crew are on my Facebook account) and during that conference we heard a word that is becoming very popular in church leadership, thought, and practice: Missional.
Missional basically means that we’re called, as followers of Jesus, to go into places where the Gospel needs to go. It means that everything we do – gathering on the weekend and in our daily life – is geared toward making us better “go-ers” but traditionally Christians have seen themselves as “stay-ers" - finding a church and living life from Sunday to Sunday thinking that it's the only place where they can encounter God.
Maybe it’s better to say it this way: church is a verb. So long we’ve thought of church as the place where you go on the weekend, where the Bible teaches on several occasions that church is actually what you are when you put your whole life into becoming like Jesus.
So, missional people understand that separate or together we are all called to be the church wherever we are.
In your job.
In your home.
In your flag football league.
On the golf course.
In the kitchen.
At Wrigley Field (or the Cell, God doesn’t discriminate though I think he’s a Cardinals fan anyway).
So in the next few blog posts I’m going to jump all over this question.
If we are built to go, what kind of spiritual disciplines or habits make us better “go-ers” and not just “stay-ers”?
In other words:
How do I pray as a “go-er”?
How do I read the Bible as a “go-er”?
How do I handle money/anger/lust/noise/distraction/my neighbor as a “go-er?”
Ultimately I think it boils down to the fact that the church was built not to hunker down in it's own building(s) and try to get people to always come there (though I think that's a great start for a lot of people), but to get sweaty running with the Gospel into places where people are broken and beaten and be the church there. The real question is how do the spiritual practices make us ready to do this?
On to worship this morning at Parkview, the series "All's Not Fair In Love and War" on marriage. If you can't be here you can always watch online here.