Ekklesia/Dallas

Tuesday afternoon thoughts..

May 20, 2008
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I stumbled across a random article by Erwin ‘The Man’ McManus called The Cause Driven Church. Thought I might share it with you… in light of the points he brings up, a whole lot of what’s swirling around in my head is making sense. Anyway, hope all is well 🙂

The Cause Driven Church

by Erwin Raphael McManus

The early church existed with a dynamic tension: it was both expanding and consolidating – growing and unifying. The Bible tells us that first century believers “shared everything in common” and that “the church was being added to day by day.” We want our church to live in this same tension.

This tension is illustrated by two biblical images – the body of Christ and the army of God. The body of Christ is centered on community; the army of God is centered on cause.

Healthy community flows out of a unified cause – not the other way around. Jesus called his disciples and said, “Follow me. I’ll make you fishers of men.” This was not an offer of community. “Follow me and I will give you something worthy of giving your life to” is a statement of cause. But the neat thing is, when they came to the cause, they found community like they never knew could exist. That’s the power of the church.

One danger of the American church is that we often try to offer people community without cause. Without cause, you’re just another civic organization. You don’t have life transformation.

Jesus said, “I have come to the world to seek and to save that which is lost.” The cause of Christ is accomplished by expanding the kingdom of God.

Communicating the gospel in a postmodern context can make us feel forced to compete with the entertainment industry. You might be able to compete if you have millions of dollars and that level of expertise. Most of us don’t. We have only one advantage that neither Hollywood nor MTV has. We have the presence and power of the living God!

Why in the world would we eliminate God’s power from our core strategy and actually move to a deficit rather than to an advantage?

[http://www.erwinmcmanus.com/cause-driven-church]

 

If you arent familiar witih Erwin, check out his bio. He kinda looks like a Beatle in this pictures but pretty cool nonetheless.  😉

[http://www.erwinmcmanus.com/bio]



A Community in Faith.

May 12, 2008
2 Comments

My dear friends,

I write this to you as I sit in a coffee shop, my mind racing with thoughts, books and study Bibles piling up around me. What are these thoughts about, you ask? Well… these are thoughts that have been rolling around in my head for the past 4-6 months but more in depth within the last 4 weeks.. and since then, these thoughts have been multiplying like crazy due to some amazing conversations I’ve had with about half a dozen people.

These are thoughts on Biblical community.

Most people think they are experiencing ‘community’ for an hour or two on Sunday mornings, maybe on Wednesday evenings if they are really religious. Most people call this church [or so I hear]. They live their lives as normal as possible, to the best of their ability. Then a week goes by, another Sunday rolls around, and they get to experience ‘community’ again.

There is something drastically wrong with this picture.

I am not writing this to try to revolutionize Biblical community. I just want to live in it. Not just a once a week gathering but day to day be involved in the lives of believers around me. Be the community. Be the Church. Be a part of something that the Lord has already put into motion. Our job is to jump in.

I also write this to you with no real tidy resolution…. [yeah, I know].

However, God is bringing me to action. I’d love to invite you to be a part of something. Something that is not necessarily anything new or cool [even though I think it is pretty fun]. It’s a Saturday morning breakfast: a time of eating great food, fellowship and prayer afterwards. What did the apostles do in Acts? They 1) devoted themselves to teaching and fellowship 2) as well as the breaking of bread and prayer. They committed themselves to community and being in tune with the Body as to sufficiently meet the needs of the Church.

I want to have a time where we can get together as the Body of Christ, not bound by topical Bible studies, small talk, denominations, church membership, surface relationships, busyness, just fill in the blank. What an amazing privilege we have to meet together as believers to spur one another on and bathe our city / neighborhood / families / friends in prayer!

Right now, I’d love to experience ekklesia in Dallas. So that’s going to be the name of the gathering/blog…although I thought SMAK was really stinkin’ creative [Saturday Mornings At Krystal’s]. Let’s just say that I won’t prevent anyone from calling it that….but I have a feeling this won’t be at my place all the time. I’d love to be able to meet in different areas of the city. For now, I’d be blessed to host it at my apartment. [“Hey, are you going to SMAK?” “Dude. Who’s not going to SMAK?…that’s the question..”]

If you feel moved to be a part of this, let’s chat. Email me. Once I talk to a few folks, I’ll send out an update on when we’ll meet up. I also don’t think meeting in community should be limited to any type of gathering. I want to know and experience what it means to be continually living in community and being intentional about it. Aaand I want this blog to be an open forum to discuss and update, to encourage and bless. So let’s have at it! [If you don’t comment, I’ll hunt you down. In a friendly Christian way…uhhh..what?]

🙂

Much love from Above,

krystal