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Church is not the destination

So occasional Blueprint attendee (actually a primal dude) Cam is a total nutter. Here is a vid of him crashing a 21st... can anyone else say "awkward"... Quote of the clip; "If you want to catch an eel, you have to work for it". And check out this excerpt of him getting arrested at Parachute.

Here are some excerpts from my talk on Sunday night entitled "church is not the destination". I am intrigued about this idea that Church finds it identity and purpose in pointing to and helping bring about the Kingdom of God. Talk heavily influenced and partly lifted from a talk by Reggie McNeal address to the Reformed Church in america that I heard recently and of course NT Wright, the man of the hour for me, and his book "suprised by hope". My text was from Mathew 6:33
It may not make huge amount of sense as I really dont want to fill in the gaps of my notes... add your own embelishments and rants...

"Church is not the destination"

In the gospels Jesus mentions the word Kingdom 121 times in 114 verses
Church is mentioned 3 times in two verses

I think there is a misconception that the Church is the destination. Its such a small bandwidth. Seek first the Kingdom.

Eg; Airport (wellington fog) When it confuses itself as the destination, thinks its winning when all the planes are on the ground and the airport ground is just packed with people. Look how many people we have! (This metaphor was used by Regie McNeal and adapted to make my own - conveniently I had being grounded on Monday last week for a number of hours at Wellington airport)

Every time it does that it screws up people’s lives.

The Airport is a connector going to somewhere I want to go.

The Church is not the destination, it’s a connector getting people to where they really want to go. To life… its pointing to the Kingdom “I came to give you church, and church more abundantly”. I came to bring life.

The role of the church is to proclaim the Kingdom. And the Kingdom brings life.

What does the Kingdom look like?

God makes a covenant with Moses.
Gen 12:2 Abraham im going to bless you, so you can bless everyone who is not in your tribe, who is not like you”.

Your job is to bless people. To be good news.

Church is a group of people on mission with God who are living out where people are living. Eg. Salt and Light.

The kingdom is every act of love, gratitude, and kindness, every work of art or music inspired by the love God and the delight in the beauty of creation; every minute spent teaching a child with disabilities to read or walk; every act of care and nuture, of comfort and support for others, all spirit led teaching, every prayer, every deed that embodies holiness rather than corruption, and makes the name of Jesus honoured in the world.

in our art and the fresh songs that are written in this community;

NT Wright: “When art comes to terms with both the wounds of the world and the promise of resurrection and learns how to express and respond to both at once, we will be on the way to fresh vision, a fresh mission".

This kingdom is centred around this idea of justice and mercy (NOTE: Chris Marshal spokes heavily to this last thursday so mentioned it rather than banged this drum to hard on this occasion)

What is happening now in the world amounts to theft by the strong from the weak, by the rich from the poor.

Eg. Elliot choosing to drink only fair trade coffee… that’s a kingdom decision

Everything that is good and beautiful – that’s the kingdom. More of that! Meals and art, justice, generosity, kindness, mercy, sacrificial service.

In telling others.

The power of the Gospel lies not in the offer of a new spirituality, or a religious experience, not in the threat of hellfire (certainly not in the threat of being left behind)

But in the powerful announcement that God is God, that Jesus is Lord, that the powers of evil have being defeated, that God’s new world has begun

People everywhere are gladly invited to come in, to join the party, to discover forgiveness for the past, an astonishing destiny in God’s future, and a vocation in the present.

My dream for blueprint is that we are a church incarnating thie Kingdom, sharing our kingdom stories. That we are actively involved in seeking Justice both globablly and locally, that we are bringing about the Kingdom in our art and creativity, in our relationships with everyone around us, and that seeking the Kingdom would bring much joy and life to us as a community, that it would define us.

Closing Questions;

• What do you enjoy doing? (God is interested in your life and may use what you enjoy to build the Kingdom. He may have created you to enjoy what you do for glorious purposes.)
• Where do you see God at work right now?
• Are you serving other (if you are not serving you are not growing)
• Are you seeking – looking for the KOG; Seeking it so bad that it gets good.

“Church is not the destination”

  1. Blogger Tash Says:

    miles apart but still on exactly the same page. love it.