Saturday, February 06, 2010

Reflection from Verge - Day 2

Another long day, another good day. I'm really becoming a Jeff Vanderstelt fan. He was one of the speakers during the first main session. Key quote: "What we're getting (here in this session at Verge) is informing, not equipping. Equipping involves doing." His point was that it's one thing to do that at a conference. It's something completely different to think that we're equipping our church, when in reality all we're doing is informing. We have to create outlets for practicing.

Most of our day was spent listening to Hugh Halter. I first heard Hugh almost two years ago. Soon after that I went through MCAP. What I learned there, and through his and Matt Smay's book The Tangible Kingdom, has had a huge impact on Neighborhood Church. Both Josh and Joe had read The Tangible Kingdom, but hearing Hugh in person was great for them.

He shared a lot of the stories that I've heard before, but what I really love about these guys is that they're practicing this in a way that some of the other speakers aren't. They continue to flesh this out, which I really appreciate. Some of what they might have said two years ago they aren't saying today, because they figured out that it doesn't work as well as they thought. But the fact that they continue to experiement, and then implement, is good.

If you've read the book, you know about the three circles: Communion (spiritual formation), Incarnational Community, and Mission. One of the biggest takeaways for us is realizing that we do incarnational community and mission pretty well, but almost all of our weekly activities feed the communion circle. The problem with that is that whatever we invest our time, energy, and resources in reveals what is most important. The good news is that we are not stuck. Hugh reminded us that pilots never fail. We will continue to experiment. We'll shelve things that don't work. We'll continue to implement what does. Continued innovation is crucial.

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