A few years ago, when I was the lead pastor of a church I had planted, I found myself in the middle of a minor conflict with some of the people who had planted the church with me. They were expressing concern and questions about the direction the church was moving.
Lots of people are talking nowadays about going from “doing ministry” to “life on mission.” And it’s an important and necessary shift we need to make if we’re going to really learn again what it means to follow Jesus.
But the transition to missional living is easier talked about than practiced. [Read more…]
When I first started trying to live on mission, I didn’t know what the heck I was doing. All I knew was that my imagination had been captured by a bigger vision for what life, faith, and ministry could be.
I love this story. Maybe you’ve heard it:
A young woman was preparing a ham dinner. After she cut off the end of the ham, she placed it in a pan for baking.
Her friend asked her, “Why did you cut off the end of the ham?”
She replied, “I really don’t know but my mother always did, so I thought you were supposed to.”
Later when talking to her mother she asked her why she cut off the end of the ham before baking it, and her mother replied, “I really don’t know, but that’s the way my mom always did it.”
A few weeks later while visiting her grandmother, the young woman asked, “Grandma, why is it that you cut off the end of a ham before you bake it?”
Her grandmother replied, “Well dear, otherwise it would never fit into my baking pan.”
As pastors, we want to lead people into a transformed life of discipleship and mission. But often people aren’t quite as interested or excited about discipleship and mission as we hope they would be.
As I’ve pastored churches as well as coached and consulted with all kinds of churches, I’ve noticed there is something built in to almost every church I’ve ever encountered that sabotages their best disciple-making intentions.