Just when you think things are looking up, the ceiling falls in. Admittedly, that's how I felt after the Mersey derby game, but when we returned home on Sunday, after a good lunch with Steve and Linda, the back bedroom ceiling had done just that. A leak .... drip, drip, drip until the whole thing collapses under the weight. Prophetic? Hope not.
Yesterday was a PMC steering group day, which was good fun (another good lunch). We began looking at the missional experimenting phase of this three year process we're working through - along with eight churches (4 Baptist, 3 Anglican and one hybrid LEP). It's going well, although I'll be surprised if all the churches involved feel the same way.
Why? One of the significant themes arising from the retreat days each church has recently had, facilitated by ourselves, is the process is clearly throwing up how the church system is not working from a missional perspective. This I think is one of the reasons why the PMC process scores over most of the programmes out there. You can't become missional by attending a conference. You can't become missional by changing the structure. You can only have a hope of changing by experimenting and attempting to learn from the actual practice. In various situations, the churches can't get to the practice because of their system. The fault lines are drawn in different places, but the good thing is, PMC provides a framework and sufficient time to address them - if churches are willing. What tends to happen without any commitment to an on-going process is we simply withdraw and hold back - again.