It has been a very busy few months. Our transition into a new city and new place of ministry has been wonderful but also has taken much time. At times I have wanted to have a direct line between my brain and this blog so that you who are faithful readers of this blog could be conversation partners.
Here are some of the questions that I have been struggling with in the last three months:
- How can I lead my congregation into fruitfulness in their neighborhood?
- What can I do as a leader to guide the people in my congregation to commit to discipleship in their daily life and to live out their discipleship as the body of Christ?
- What are the key aptitudes/gifts/skills needed to lead the church today?
- Are we in a season of decline as United Methodism or could we see it as a season of pruning? If it is a season of pruning how can we prune effectively as we grow in our kingdom work?
- Can we agree that we must be fruitful as a church but that we must measure the right things in order for those metrics to keep us accountable?
- What does God’s kingdom look like in our neighborhood? How does this relate to evangelism?
- What do we understand our identity to be as people of God? What are we to be about in the world?
- What is the difference between being a member of a congregation and being a disciple of Jesus?
- What is the purpose of preaching in the local church? What would “field preaching” look like today?
- Are most of our church members one of our biggest “mission fields” as it relates to discipleship?
- Can we move into this uncertain future with confidence? As people of the resurrection can we stop using death and survival language that in the end does not inspire, build up, nor does it speak to our understanding of the Gospel?
There are so many things that I want to say about these questions. Some of you continue to be conversation partners and I hope to speak in this space about these things and about the many others that will continue to emerge as I continue my pastoral work. These are exciting times in the life of the church as we seek to live into new realities in light of our faith.
More later . . .