Christianity Today interviewed Bob Roberts of the Northwood Church in Ft. Worth. Below are a couple of excerpts that caught my attention...
"We aren't about weekends," Bob says. "We aren't just trying to get people into church. It's 'kingdom in, kingdom out.'"
In kingdom work, we make a mistake when we start with ecclesiology. We should start with Christology. Our first approach should be "How can we live out the love of Jesus in this society?" It's not "How can we start a church?"
People living like Jesus: that's what changes a society. Too often, we start with a preacher who tries to gather a church first, thinking that, in time they'll get around to engaging the world. That's backwards.
If my church is primarily about the Sunday event, then doing kingdom work is secondary and actually unnecessary. If the Sunday event and church programming is primary, then I'll spend all my time, money, and energy on what happens inside the church.
For so many pastors, church is about what happens on Sunday. Well, I really disagree with that. Church is not supposed to be a Sunday event. It's supposed to be salt and light in the family, in the community, and around the world.
9 Things I'm Learning and Unlearning
I'm learning … that mission begins with Christology not ecclesiology. Following Jesus leads us to mission, which leads to churches gathering.
I'm unlearning … my assumption that starting churches naturally leads to mission. It doesn't. Churches default to self-focus unless a commitment to be like Jesus in the world comes first.
I'm learning … that being glocal means decentralizing power, decision making, information, all of it. The kingdom of God means ministry opportunities are available to almost everyone.
I'm unlearning … the American church's traditional focus on a super-star speaker, worship leader, educator, and shepherd, which serves mainly to attract spectators rather than igniting the power of everyone else.
I'm learning … that we serve not to convert but because we have been converted. We serve because Christ has changed us and made us servants to people who are hurting and lost.
I'm unlearning … the assumption that "Christian" is defined primarily as acknowledging a moment of conversion. Becoming a follower of Jesus depends on what happens after that.
I'm learning … to love people, which means to see them healed, educated, and given the same opportunities that we have.
I'm unlearning … that the Christian faith is all about heaven. I believe the church has denied the future by just waiting for the Second Coming. We need a story that includes the future.
I'm learning … the kingdom will be established not by human power or entertainment, but by realizing God's concern for humanity and the whole of society.