Thursday, 8 November 2007

Understanding of a word.

I posted this as a comment on Hamo's blog: Terminology but thought that I've fleshed it out enough to be a stand along blog here... and was interested in your thoughts so here it is...

I think my ideas on the terminology of the word ‘church’ is what’s been evolving for me this past 12 months.

Looking at what you’ve been up to, my own journey with Whitehill Church of Christ in Ipswich and getting more involved in City North Baptist in Brisbane, plus looking at WEC and the Muslim targeted church they’ve planted in Sydney really has stretched my ideas on what ‘church’ really means.

Relationships seem to play the key role in the church, not the services, music and people already in the church (how i was brought up). The WEC church plant in Sydney especially has shown me how outer focused the church really should be, how comfortable it should be for the people around it who are not part of it, even if it’s not exactly what the people already in it are feeling.

The idea of the church is to introduce people to Jesus, through doing that we can strengthen each other, but the core focus isn’t strengthening each other, it’s a by-product of working together to introduce people to Jesus (did I just say the same thing twice back-to-front???)

By looking at that it’s really been able to define more clearly the work I’ve been doing at the Drag Track as a motorsports chaplain. That is no longer a ‘outward ministry’, but simply a church I belong to, I and the other chaplains, trying to introduce people to Jesus through being there at meets and simply building relationships with them.

I’d never considered it church before because we didn’t preach, or even very visible outreach. We were just there - people to come and chat with about every day life… people who the guys knew they could vent to, or come to if there was an incident at the track - which has now developed into them coming to us when they have bigger questions on life… like the death of a mate or parent, marriage and troublesome kids.

Suddenly that seems a whole lot more like the church (according to my new understanding of the terminology) than what a Sunday Service looks like.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'd have to disagree with some of that...I think Church is about worshipping God and fellowshipping with other Christians - and non-christians coming along and being converted is a side-product of that. There were times that Jesus spent alone with his Disciples (eg the last supper and many conversations they had), they weren't out there evangelising 100% of the time. For me, going to church is re-energising my relationship with God - worshipping him together with other believers and learning more about Him - equipping me to go out into the world and talk to my non-christian friends.

Of course there is nothing wrong with non-christians coming to church either.

For me, the Worship Service is just that - worship - not trying to convert people. However the church can run other events geared for that kind of thing - bible studies, camps, youth groups, special events etc etc etc - but at its core I believe Church is about worship & fellowship & equipping.

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