One of the most impactful worship environments that I’ve participated in was in a marginalized community in Springdale, Australia. The Gospel was potent that Sunday evening many years ago. We met in a community center where me and Gina (my wife) ate a meal with other members of the community, from donated food. A closet set aside for clothing and other necessities, was made available to those in need. After we ate together on the first floor, we went upstairs to participate in worship together. That evening was memorable in many ways:
- Inter-generational – from twenty-somethings to 60 year-olds
- Multi-ethnic – Pacific Islanders to Aussies
- Socially diverse – current and former drug addicts, prostitutes and people working towards sobriety
The evening began with scripture reading and prayer. A cardboard box with percussion instruments was passed around so everyone could have a shaker, tambourine or drum to beat. Then in a light-hearted manner, the worship leader led this rag-tag band in a couple of familiar worship songs, inviting people to engage in a non-threatening manner.
Perhaps the highlight that sticks-out for me was the leader that led the Bible portion of the night who was from the local community. After various people read the passage aloud, we broke-up into smaller groups to explore insights from the passage and ways to apply the truths we had gleaned. To culminate our time together we shared Communion as a symbol of the New Covenant Jesus had called this gathering to live-out together, in a missional community called the Rainbow Church.
You might have thought I was going to share the content of the Gospel with you as if something had changed. The New Covenant Jesus preached and lived-out remains the same as 2,000+ years ago. However, the church of today must return to a more incarnational and missional expression of the Gospel.
One church staff team I consulted with recently came up with the slogan to rebrand their ministry: Be Missional to Multiply! This is what Jesus did. This is what the church must return to. This is what the church must be and move towards.
Reflect on the questions below so that you and your ministry can. Be Missional to Multiply!
- How are you making the Gospel unnecessarily resistible?
- What does it mean to be missional in your context?
- What can you do differently to make missional living part of your DNA?
- How are you multiplying disciples?
- What else could you be doing?