This post looking at institutions in general and then applying it back to the church.
Comment on Deep Church Blog
I agree with Dave in his reaction against institutions, and only because of what many institutions are simply nothing more than a large community of people all benefiting a few people at the top, and all of them following a few people at the top. Unless that is God at the top (which we would all want to claim to) then I don’t see it happening.
However, if we could have institutions that existed for the people at the bottom, well then , now you are talking. The conference I am at this weekend is a perfect example. It’s open source, and there is no top or bottom. Everyone has a role, developer, user, raper (those that make a killing of the product they didn’t make) etc. All of them love each other and wouldn’t exist without one another. An institution like this I am for. I’m not freaked out by specialization like Dave seems to be, I think its OK to focus in on one or two things you are good at and kick some ass, I can’t honestly expect to learn all the skills and be good at everything. What’s the point of community.
Here is my fear Dave, is that if we throw out institutions all together, then eventually we throw out community, because in a way its very much an institution, but it doesn’t exist for its top members but it exists for everyone inside it and more importantly for a purpose outside itself. You’re view eventually leads you to solidarity with yourself and dependence on no one.
Dom, the institution that you would pull for (my guess you would be much more closer to a pope/bishop type institution, correct me if I’m wrong) I think is ridiculous and is exactly why many people are bunking the entire institutional model. To many people at the top, who are people just like us, fall because they are higher up and not on equal level with everyone else. No man should be on top with control and power unless it’s Jesus, which again, I just don’t buy it if someone says that they themselves or someone else has been put in a position of power by God over his body.
A little snippet of a post on Rob McAlpine’s blog:
Why I am house-church/emerging-church
Within a broad generalization, it can be argued that emerging churches fall into two types (with many permutation between the two poles):
1. House churches which further subdivide into (A) intentional missional communities of faith, and (B) healing communities for those needing to detox from church for a season, and
2. Emerging churches, which may include (and often do) a house/cell component, …
From a post by the internet monk.
I love this passage of scripture. I don’t know why know one believes it, but I love it.
But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us. We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies. For we who live are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh.
(2 Corinthians 4:7-11)
Let me attempt a slight retelling of the text, more in line with the Christianity of our time.
But we have this treasure in saved, healed, delivered and supernaturally changed vessels, to show that God has given to us, right now, His surpassing power over ever situation. We are no longer afflicted, perplexed, in conflict or defeated. No, we are alive with the power of Jesus, and the resurrection power of Jesus has changed us now…TODAY! In every way!. God wants you to see just what a Jesus-controlled person is all about, so the power of Jesus is on display in the life I am living, and those who don’t have this life, are miserable and dying.
Contextual concerns aside, let’s read Paul’s words as a basic “reality board” to the Christian life.
read more …
A post found on realmealministries.org
What does a missional leader do?
I have always been drawn to the concise yet profound definition by John Maxwell-”Leadership is influence. Nothing more. Nothing less.” Influence is a potent term. It captures the essence of leadership. Influence is the ability to persuade or move people or institutions to adopt a certain course of action or to believe certain things to be true. It is also, as Erwin McManus suggests, the ability to change the things that a person cares about.