Thursday, August 24, 2006

How Can A Church Make Its Neighborhood A Better Place To Live?

How does that really happen? The question is imbedded with my goal for Anchor's impact on our immediate community. But can we do more? What? Our initial goal was to be a church for the neighborhood - we wanted to see lots of families walking to church every Sunday. That's happening, and it is always very cool to see. We wanted to serve kids and youth and their families, so we started LUYC. It was a great experience for all involved, and we learned alot, but it didn't necessarily lead to the change I envisioned.

What obligation does a church have to its neighorhood? What can a church offer that is unique and a genuine part of its calling? What can Anchor do about poverty in our neighborhood? How do we get involved in the economic, social, transportation, education, housing and cultural issues as a church? What does the Kingdom of God have to do with these? What does the Gospel mean in these contexts?

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

The Mystical Leader

Yesterday I listened to a sermon by Bill Hybels on "Leadership Fundamentals". It was a good talk, especially since it began with a really cool story. As he came to his final point, he mentioned that much of his leadership was mystical, a word he acknowledged is not commonly associated with him. Yet he regularly, over the years, has referred to the role of Spirit-promptings in his ministry. And his example has been an encouragement and model for me. Hybels made a point to not downplay the role of leadership skills, but he wanted to make clear that those skills are worthless to God apart from His promptings. Following those promptings for me that last two days has been's lead to very good contacts and conversations. It usually does. So why do I not lean harder on those promptings?

When I think about the ministry year ahead of me, it's like a fog. I'm nervous as I step into it, I don't think I have all the leadership skills necessary to succeed like I want. But then I remember how much good has come from following the Spirit's promptings. So I'll take what I know and follow faithfully Who I Know. I don't usually think of myself as a mystical leader, even if that is really what I am. I suppose another way to refer to it is the Faithful and Fruitful Leader. Either way, I'm sure the fog will be fun.