What is Possible? Introducing the )open( churchThis post wraps up my series "Welcome to the )open( church" by summarizing the roadmap of how we can get there.
The full presentation of this material is now available as a PDF file which you can open here:
The )open( church is a grassroots movement that will work to organize this new model, mode, message and mission. What will it look like? It will look like love acted out. It will look like the kingdom of God!
the )open( church
- Be the kingdom of God, love acted out
- A church about people & loving God
- A grassroots movement that shares grace with one another and the world
Love Acted Out
In order to transform our way of thinking about the church we need to imagine what's possible if we start with love, and act it out.
- We have to let go of ourselves, our comfort, and the ways that church directly benefits "me", and we need to think of loving others.
- We need to live for love, and embrace the life that comes from unselfish motives and compassion for others. We need to live courageously and generously.
- Next, we need to listen first and talk later. We need to practice our active listening skills. We need to reassure people that they can share their ideas and be accepted and listened to, no matter what ideas they have. We need to be a church that listens, if we want genuine sharing to lead to stronger community. This will put acceptance and tolerance into practice.
- Only in this way can we learn from one another. We need to be humble and willing to learn, and committed to learning through practice! There are many people around us that can teach us something. Can we pay attention and grow as people, growing spiritually, by learning from one another?
- Next we will find the joy in living life together. We will laugh! We will celebrate!
- Naturally in this environment, we will have people to lean on when we need it. When people love one another they can lean on one another. Pain for one is pain for all. We will naturally know how to help each other, if the relationships are strong and we are more aware of the need.
Be the Kingdom of God
This diagram summarizes the key ways that the )open( church can respond to it's challenges and embrace it's identity as the kingdom of God. This new model for church, leading to a new mode of operating, a new mission and a new message, will be a new grassroots movement to change the church, allowing it to transform to meet the needs of future generations.