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Missional Schmissional

28 May, 2003 12:46 AM

I've just been reading Kim's article Characteristics of Missional Church again (which I think is a good one btw) and am wondering about this word 'missional'. Its a word I'd not heard used until around 2 years ago but since then have been hearing it all over the place. It seems to be a buzz word, at least here in Australia it is, something that gets attached to all kinds of activities, communities, people, programs and strategies.

I don't have a problem with the word itself, but I'm wondering if maybe we're kidding ourselves with the vast array of things we slap it on as a label? I've no doubt that there is some great mission going on around our globe at the moment, but I wonder if sometimes we 'talk' more about it than we 'do' it? Perhaps its just a Aussie problem but in the past year or so I've been asked to do the guest speaker thing at 4 or 5 evangelistic events only to arrive and find that the only people there are Christians. Yet at the end of the night everyone congratulates themselves at having had a great missional activity.

I wonder why we (I) struggle so much with Mission. The way I see it is that it should be central and a natural part of our lives - yet so often it becomes 'an activity' (if we do it at all) and often a very unnatural activity at that. Why do we get it so wrong? Is it fear? Is it that we don't actually know what it is? Is it that we are worried about not being politically correct? Is it because most of us don't even know anyone who isn't a Christian? Or is it that we are just too wrapped up in our own little lives that we don't have the time or inclination to connect with those around us?

UpdateFred asks the question

Has evangelism become more of a communal practice than an individual practice? I wonder if this might have something to do with it?

Comments

Page:

buzzwords - I don't recall Christ using them.

I think your post has inspired a "daily~biscuit" to be seen soon over at my place.


t h r i v e!
O

owen » 28 May, 2003 11:06 AM

Yeh darren - I actually think the 'missional church' is an ironic term - its like speaking of a 'premiership oriented football team'. Is there any other kind of church than a missional one?? Perhaps 'missional' has come into vogue because there have been and still are other kinds of churches. Now its just become part of the vocab, but I agree that as the term becomes more widely used it loses its meaning. I sat thru a talk on the 'missional church' last week that was nothing more than church growth 101!

hamo » 28 May, 2003 3:40 PM

sadly I myself don't take time out of my day to drive to the city where there is obvious poverty and do anything about it. If I happen to be there when someone asks for help, I do what I can.

Evangelism, i believe, has everything to do with community. I read a Henri Nouwen book called, "IN THE NAME OF JESUS: REFLECTIONS ON CHRISTIAN LEADERSHIP" where he talked about all of the missionaries of the early church being sent out in at least twos! This was (again I believe) to show people the love of God by the relationship that they had with one another. John 13:35:

"By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another."

I believe that if we cannot be evangelistic on our own, we won't do it in groups either. I think that church evanglism (the kind of crusade you described in this post) and communal evangelism may be two different things. there's my brain fart for the day.

jeremy olson » 28 May, 2003 3:45 PM

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