Monday, January 5, 2009

Continuing the Journey in 2009

The wonderful holiday season is officially over and the New Year has arrived. I am looking forward to meeting new friends in 2009 and to reconnecting with many with whom we have already begun a shared journey in pursuit of God’s purpose.

In order to gain insights into the book I am currently working on, I have prepared a very simple survey regarding disciple-making in the local church that will allow me to gather information from many churches rapidly. Without doubt, churches around the world struggle to be effective in making disciples. Last year I spoke with key leaders from five continents and found they share a common concern in this central task of the church. We will never experience congregations living the purposes of God until those in our churches have learned to walk as authentic disciples. This is prerequisite number one to any life whose course is set for God’s mission.

If you would be willing to invest a quarter of an hour in responding to the survey, please drop me a line at and let me know. The on-line instrument will go out later this week. In advance, let me say “thank you” for joining with me in this important information gathering process. And please pray that I may effectively hear God as I wait before Him with pen in hand (actually keyboard at ready).

Next week I will be at Mennonite Brethren Biblical Seminary in San Jose, California teaching an intensive course, The Church in God’s Mission. I am looking forward to interaction with students and congregational leaders during the classroom sessions. So that you can be better informed as you journey with us in prayer, we will post a video update from San Jose so you can learn about the students and our class experience.

In dialogue with acting President Dr. Lynn Jost, I have become aware of concerns expressed by some leaders regarding the term “missional.” In the ever changing dialogue and interaction regarding the church’s relevance in society, new terms may be perceived as dismissal of that which has been, in favor of that which is new. Pray that we can allay misunderstandings regarding the missional posture, that it may be perceived as a totally Biblical application of truth in contexts where the church finds itself, valuing the faith legacy of the past while seeking God’s direction for today.

No comments: