Friday, 26 August 2011

a riot on holiday!

Been away from two weeks, the world went mad, but normal service has been restored, so it appears, so I'm left wondering whether I simply dreamt it all!
Back from two weeks in Cornwall, which was like falling back in love - with Cornwall, I mean. Spent two weeks wondering where everybody was as I keep hearing about how many people are staying in the UK for their holidays. We've avoided Cornwall in the summer for a good few years (crowds, paying to park, weather, etc.), but the last two weeks suggest something else.
Whilst away we try and avoid TV, radio, e-mail, blogging(!), newspapers, so were unaware of the riots until they'd past the peak.
I did end up reading something about what was going on once we were aware and have no great desire to add to myriad of reflections in terms of who's to blame, what was really going on, etc. What I couldn't help thinking about, however, was the nature of the organisation behind them, if that's the word. I was simultaneously reading around various things feeding into the reality of our present and future challenges as the people of God within the UK. The same words keep cropping up in both stories: networks, social networking, viral communication, spontaneity, flexibility. I recall someone's comparison to al qaeda and missional multiplication networks. This is not to suggest what's happened is not really important in and of itself, but ..... I need to think about that some.

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

unlocking and releasing the apostolic?

Things have not been quite so hectic the last couple of weeks. ironically, blogging doesn't happen so frequently either - weird that, how you have more time, but ...!
One of the delights has been to have a number of conversations with people who have encouraged me deep down inside - because I can see they're attempting to help their churches break out of the mould.
I've tried to nudge WEBA towards the idea part of our role, at least, is about cultivating an apostolic environment and a number of these recent conversations have caused me to reflect a little more on this.
I believe God equips His Church with all we need for our next steps in the exciting adventure of faith in Jesus.
I believe Ephesians 4 too and assume God has gifted His Church with the broad range of people, who bring the APEPT Ministries specifically mentioned here, plus others, to the table.
However, this can easily be seen, with the pre-dominant present UK Baptist mind-set, to equate to every local expression - that is, 'local' Church. I'm no longer convinced, by my own logic, if this is pushed to its logical conclusion to imply no congregation needs to draw upon others, outside of themselves, for bringing a re-awakening of certain aspects of these various gifts.
However, what is my role all about? Well .... I often wonder and have looked longingly at various jobs recently (why I nearly applied to join a car rental firm is another story!).
However, it's appears to me at least, to be far more about re-kindling the latent, overlooked, forgotten apostolic gifting in an individual, or the church more widely, than it is attempting to be the person with that gifting for them as a group of God's people.
Once you start looking for the apostolic gifting and patterns, rather than trying to identify the individuals, you find much more.
Is it necessary for others to name that, or should I just be glad they're acting on it?
I'm hoping Alan Hirsch's book, 'On the Verge', will arrive before my holiday and I'm hoping he's going to help me explore this some more.