Tuesday, 16 September 2008

Embarking on the adventure

Okay, been a while since I posted, but recently God has really convicted me of what His plans for me and for this site are.

As part of planning and researching my book I'm going to be visiting a few churches, mainly around London but also in other areas, and seeing what values they have, how they operate, their similarities and differences and strengths and weaknesses. I hope to visit churches of different denominations and sizes in different areas as well.

As part of this I feel its right for me to visit the church that has inspired me as much as any, which is Mars Hill Bible Church in Grand Rapids, Michigan in the USA, the church planted and pastored by Rob Bell (of Nooma fame). I hope to visit sometime next spring/early summer and have all my visits done by this time next year.

I also intend to read around the subject as much as I can and learn as much as I can, so that what I eventually write will be something fresh and new, and not simply just repeating others words.

A lot of the fruits of my research will be appearing here first, and a lot of it may be very raw and unstructured, as I try to crystallise my ideas.

I'm looking forward to it, and it will be a real adventure with God.

Friday, 5 September 2008

Whats right with church

I read a blog by a friend of mine today who was sick of all the negativity and criticism around church and what's wrong with church.

Made me think, how often do we look at what's good about church?

Its all very well me saying we need to heal a broken body, but there's no point trying to heal what doesn't need healing.

There's plenty of good things about the church today. Things to build on. Things to be positive about.

Churches who get serious with community and homeless projects.

Churches and Christian organisations who are sending teams to other countries to provide aid, build homes and preach the gospel.

Churches and Christian orgnaisations who are discipling and equipping young people in the Christian faith and helping them find their identities in Christ.

Projects where people with almost nothing to live for find Jesus and change their lives.

Churches where people are healed of sickness.

Communities who provide for each others needs in a practical way. Providing food, money, housing and facilities for those who need it.

Churches where all people are welcomed no matter what their background.

Churches where there are some really anointed preachers, teachers and leaders at work.

I won't go into specific names, because that would take the glory away from the one who deserves it. Jesus.

There is lots of good stuff going on in individual churches and Christian charities worldwide. The Kingdom of God is expanding. There are people, church communities, christian organisations, Christian leaders making huge change all over the world and impacting lives and communities for Jesus, and they are all part of the body of Christ, so its all 'doing church' as far as I can see.

Its not enough.

Its never enough.

There's lots of things wrong with the church no matter what way you look at it. The real meaning and heart of church has been lost to the general public and to many who are part of it.

There is lots to do, and on this site I intent to investigate what Jesus wanted from church, what He modelled for us, how that interprets to church today, what's wrong with the church and what we can do to make it more like the body, the community, its meant to be.

Its something that impacts us all, and we all need to be asking the same kind of questions, so that we can make our own church communities more of a reflection of the idea that Jesus talked about.

So let us begin.