Home

Two of the interesting things I’ve read recently

Leave a comment

I have lately been taking up interest in some developments at the denominational level. I am working on a significant blog post related to the denominational picture more than to Nobleford, but it is not fully ready. I’m  not sure it every will be, actually.

Instead, for now, I’ll share a few things by others which I have read recently and which are pretty close to my own views. Transition Team members are especially likely to appreciate the applicability of the second one.

This first one you can skip the first four paragraphs about a particular dispute, and begin reading at the heading “What to make of little progress.” I do agree with him that the self-awareness he writes about is a big part of transformation.

http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2014/may-web-only/real-transformation-happens-when.html?start=3

This one is by a consultant who has worked with many many churches. He says the single common factor in churches that are dying is their inward focus. Here is his list of warning signs:

Warning Symptoms

  • There are very few attempts to minister to those in the community.
  • Church business meetings become arguments over preferences and desires.
  • Numbers of members in the congregation are openly critical of the pastor, and lay leaders in the church.
  • Any change necessary to become a Great Commission church is met with anger and resistance.
  • The past becomes the hero.
  • Culture is seen as the enemy instead of an opportunity for believers to become salt and light.
  • Pastors and other leaders in the church become discouraged and withdraw from effective leadership.
  • If the churches are a part of a denomination or similar affiliation, meetings of those denominations mirror the churches in lost focus and divisiveness.

http://thomrainer.com/2014/05/31/common-factor-declining-churches/?fb_action_ids=10152407711820129&fb_action_types=og.likes

Happily, not all apply here! But the ones that do will likely sting a little. More hopefully, the prod will be seen as an opportunity to work more on transformation in the congregation!

Advertisements

Value integrity

Leave a comment

I feel a need to give my creativity and deeper thinking a rest this week. So instead of creating a new posting I’ll share one I wrote and shared on the CRC network a few weeks ago. It has relevance here, but really addresses a broader issue for all churches.

http://network.crcna.org/pastors/expressed-values-lacking-integrity-lived-values

Lending substance to my claim to see similarties

Leave a comment

As I mentioned publicly, I have been reading a book co-written by nine young adults who were raised Hutterite and who found the true gospel of freedom in Jesus Christ and left their colonies (and often families) to live in our world.

I also mentioned publicly that I see similarities in the CRC I have known and know now and some of the mistaken cultural and religious beliefs and behaviours of the Hutterites and other similar groups.

The post this link takes you to is a partial demonstration of what I see. I simply had to stop the project of documenting this, because more important work was falling by the wayside.

To go there, click on the underlined words just above, or follow this: http://wp.me/P3etrg-aS

Accidental Exclusion

Leave a comment

I wrote a new reflective article on how some of the things we value culturally in the church become barriers to newcomers feeling welcome even though we don’t intend that. You can read it here: “No More Joiners.

To read a printable pdf format version of this reflection, follow this link:https://www.dropbox.com/s/6a1bwjponl9izp2/No%20More%20Joiners.pdf

New partial picture and new reflective article

Leave a comment

I’ve put up another article, which you can read by clicking here.

I also took a shapshot of the front of the church, but can only use a small part of it. If you think about the reason I am here, you will understand why I picked the part I did.