Sunday, 18 November 2007
Creating the Future - Recap
The best God conversations are those that God himself initiates; right? I love the excitement and the expectancy at the Vineyard but what’s more is the fact that God is challenging us to be the Church. Yesterday we dialled down as I invited the Vineyard into my personal journey, to talk about what I love about our community of faith and what we need to keep as our DNA, especially as we move together, one tribe creating the future.
1.Come as you are, honesty and transparency
Draw close to God, and God will draw close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners; purify your hearts, you hypocrites. James 4:8 (NLT)
Its life giving to come to Church,to be able to come to God and not worry about what people think. When people know that Christ followers understand them, they conclude that maybe the High God understands them too. Does your faith allow people access to God so that God Himself will change their lives and renew them? So often we want our theology box ticked and our doctrine fitted neatly.What often happens then is when broken people show up,we panic and hide behind intolerance.
2. Worship - Singing simple songs to Jesus (words that I could understand)
There is a beautiful mystical thing that happens when we draw close to God through worship, when we draw near to God, we feel and know the closeness of the Divine.
1 Jn 3: 20 This then is how we know that we belong to the truth, and how we set our hearts at rest in his presence. Isn’t this the condition of too many people that their hearts are not at rest? I have found myself too many times in chaos and unrest when He’s not all that I want.
We welcome sinners in and allow people to belong before they believe. This doesn’t mean we embrace sin but we do embrace sinners because we need to embrace each other.
Matt 9: 11 – 13 When the Pharisees saw him keeping this kind of company, they had a fit, and lit into Jesus' followers. "What kind of example is this from your Teacher, acting cozy with crooks and riff-raff?" 12 Jesus, overhearing, shot back, "Who needs a doctor: the healthy or the sick? 13 Go figure out what this Scripture means: 'I'm after mercy, not religion.' I'm here to invite outsiders, not coddle insiders."
I'm tempted to say to those who criticize embracing lost people "Go figure!"
4. We all get to play
Remember as a kid lining up against the wall and waiting for someone to call your mane and pick you for the game. Remember feeling rubbish because you weren't in the top 5? As painful as that was I think there is an aching in the hearts and souls of Christ followers and those who are not yet to be called out to play. I loved Lego, still do but one piece is no fun. When we all add a our piece we begin to imagine, create and see.
What you do personally is what will drive us corporately. Let’s not do church but lets be the Church, but let’s do it together.