So many of us who are interested or concerned with ecclesiology, church growth and evangelism would spend time listening intently to the latest podcast or reading the latest book on the subject.
You hear of ‘seeker-friendly’, purpose-driven, organic church, simple church, multi-site church and ‘fresh expressions’. Some are ‘old hat’, some are relatively new, some are sensible, some are inventive and some are just plain intentionally provocative. Still – they all seem to have a genuine desire to connect with those who need to hear the Good News.
I heard someone quote Craig Groeschell (I like LC wonderful generosity and what they have done with the best Christian app on Itunes) who said something like this: ‘to reach people no one else is reaching you need to do things no one else is doing.’
And the speaker challenged those who were listening to make whatever changes in their church service and ministries in order to reach people.
I hope I am not over-reacting or being defensive. I am not averse to change but I am nauseated by the current church obsession with change.
I wondered whether that’s why we get it wrong: mixing-up what church gatherings should be (koinonia, ecclesia) with what outreach should be.
A couple of questions to ponder over (while musing over Acts & the Epistles):
- Were the Early Church gatherings primarily for ‘insiders’ or ‘outsiders’?
- Is mission/outreach/witnessing a Church task or a personal one?