Saturday, October 25, 2008

When Mission Gets Lost in the System

Ed Stetzer wrote a fascinating post in light of his recent trip to Europe. He observed a striking difference between European Church Planters and the Vatican.

When Donna an I talked on the plane coming home (faces 11 inches apart), we were struck by how these church planters live incarnationally. Europe was their home-- and they were seeking to live sent on God's mission.

When we went to the Vatican, we did not find it to be a spiritual experience. It spoke to us, but not about faith. It spoke to us of power. It did not evoke "go and tell." Rather, it was clearly "come and see." (And, that same sentence would be true in many non-Catholic settings as well-- including a few I know all too well.)
. . .

Most of us have a Constantinian model for church which, very simply, is summed up like this: building + clergy + program = church

A better equation is this: body + mission + kingdom = church. We need to be a body on mission for the Kingdom

4 comments:

Josh said...

I'll try not to be too pessimistic, but I was struck by just how true I perceive this to be in our church's today. Most churches are not taught to live this - body + mission + kingdom = church

Rather they're either taught the former or have bought in to some other system. I've been thinking a lot about this lately, and it's a good reminder of just how much we need to be reminded of who we are in Christ, what our mission is as a body (not just individuals), and to embody the kingdom right here and now for all the world to witness. Great post. Thanks Mark.

Josh

Anonymous said...

AMEN, AMEN, AMEN, AMEN!!!!!

Dave Quinn said...

Amen Mark, good post. I think it is too easy to get caught up in maintaining the "structure" rather than use it to reach people.
Amen to Josh's comment too.

Anonymous said...

People get so caught up in the mission they forget what the mission is!