Here are the links
Just in case anyone is looking for the technical posts I had here regarding Responsive Web Design, Css, And Google fonts; I have moved these posts over to the wiki.
Here are the links
Someone asked me for an interpretation this morning. They had been given a word. Literally. A single word - "Parasite". I think there are other interpretations but her'e what I got so far:
Part of it might refer to the way that the church sometimes acts sortof like a virus. A virus has only one concern. Replication of itself.
A virus clones itself by injecting itself into a host cell’s DNA then using the cell’s normal reproduction which results in a clone of the virus, which then destroys the host cell, escapes, and infects a new cell to begin the process again.
The host cell is treated in a very devalued way. The cell becomes seen as merely a carrier. The original design and job of the cell is ignored. There are many types of cells, each created uniquely. Whether it is a muscle tissue cell, a heart cell, a blood cell; each are designed and created by God to do a certain job, to be good at certain things and not other tasks.
The virus doesn’t care about the cell’s design; it treats them all the same. It just uses the cell for its own purposes, its own reproduction.
The strategy of modern church evangelism is similar in SOME respects. (this is not a direct parallel, it is merely illustrative of ONE aspect of church culture.
The focus is growth of the church. The church numbers must grow. We say we are focussed on the individual. We do not want to see any person perish, so all must be saved. We know that every person needs God. We think (correctly) that we are helping them. BUT we make one mistake that is similar to what the virus does.
We do not stop to consider the purpose and design of the individual cell. We focus on getting the person saved, saying the sinner’s prayer and accepting Jesus as their lord. We know this is not enough though, so we “disciple” them with some basic teaching, and hand them a bible. This is good.
The problem is that we do not really consider the design of the individual. To be honest, we do not how to do this. What type of questions do we need to ask? What would we do with the answers?
The bible us some clues, when it talks about spiritual gifts. Different people have different giftings, and the body only functions correctly, when each member acts in accordance with his gifts and abilities. Typically though, the church acknowledges this fact, and stops there.
Instead, we need to learn what it means to grow each of the different spiritual gifts. The bible is clear that some are meant to be prophets, some teachers, some pastors, some evangelists, among other things. What do these words even mean? We do not really have a clear definition for some of these things, let alone an understanding of how to steward and support, and build into each of these types of giftings.
The job of the church is to build disciples.
We already have the disciples - now we have to BUILD them. Build INTO them, support them, help them grow in their gifts, into their God-given appointment, anointings and destiny. God works through promises. This has always been the case. The whole old testament is built around promises. The new covenant is also a promise. It is a promise of “now, and not yet”. Our job is to work with God to develop the promises he has already given. This is true of both the corporate promises, and the individual promises. God has a wonderful plan for your life. It does not stop at “getting saved”. What is that plan? Do we even ever think to ask? Probably most of us do, but it feels like something we have to sort out on our own. It is not something we address openly in the church. The church is supposed to be the place where those dreams are fostered, nurtured, and fleshed out. The church is supposed to enable the promises by resourcing, equipping, stewarding, and holding accountable, according to God’s promises.
The only way to do this is to acknowledge, value, honour, cherish, and grow the various giftings and the individual promises, passions, and even “natural talents” and abilities. Ignoring these differences results in ignoring the actual individual as a person that God made in a certain way. We treat everyone the same. We teach them all the same stuff - the lowest common denominator. We do not get into the meaty teaching of the various types of disciples. We stick with the “milk” teachings that everyone can understand.
The church is full of different people. People who have been ignored. People who have been abused. People who have been repressed. People who have been trampled, silenced, wounded.
The church is full of broken people. People hurt by family and loved ones. People hurt by the world. People hurt by the church. The church needs to repent for their part in the wounding. The church needs to foster healing from hurt. This requires a highly individualized ministry. This requires a lot of discernment. This requires the various members of the body acting in coordination to assist with the complex ministry of individual and corporate wellness; of community, of growing together and healing together and learning together and exploring together. This requires a totally different culture from what we are used to.
The body needs to learn to dance.
My latest "poetic" publication is now available. "Cornel Tiles - 3 Solutions" appears in the series finale episode XII of Jeremy Stewart's DREAMLAND Magazine. Now available for purchase at Books & Company in PG.
I dig Role Playing Games. Always have, ever since I first played D&D3e back in '84. But somehow I never really had a lot of opportunity to play. Well last year, that changed and my buddy AJ let me into his campaign on his homebrew system. I love it! Also, since I am really into Systems Thinking and Creative Design, I started making my own RPG System. It's sortof only half done at the moment, but I am wondering if any of you would want to sign up to help me with some beta testing in the next couple months. If that sounds like something that floats your boat, look here: http://www.dimensionfold.com/wiki/doku.php/rpg:goldensword_rpg_system
and then drop me a line with the subject "RPG beta"
Do you ever wonder about the universe? What even IS it? Come explore with me...
As you can probably tell, we have updated the site, and changed some things around a bit. For one thing, we are now mobile friendly! For another, we have brought back the Blog!