Thursday, August 03, 2006

24-7prayer reflections

Having a nice chilled out day today, I love holidays they give you space to reflect.

I have been thinking about this phase that has led to some discussion within our 24-7 family;"blessing and building" how that it sounds so narrow and attempts to put 24-7prayer into 2 different streams.

I really feel that if we build we bless and if we bless we build. We shouldn't get to stressed on seperating the two. A week ago I was thinking we should but as I reflect I find it hard to cut a straight line between the two.

24-7 prayer is, or should I say, should be, a church planting movement. Church planting is about building and blessing. Not a choice between one or the other, "Oh I'm a builder, Oh I'm a blesser" do me a favour..

I have been contacted by a number of people from YWAM over the last year asking if they could come to Ibiza to "do mission"!!! I am sure this is not representative of the whole of YWAM, but we are not called to do mission, we are called to be mission. We send people out in the summer to do mission with the hope that they will eventually be the mission. Inevitably we have to move from just doing mission, sending people out on short term teams, to being missional; sending them out permanently to plant, this is a natural and correct progression.

Short term mission should lead to long term mission which is really only validly expressed in church planting.

Whats so frightening about that statement? Nothing really. When Tracy and myself where commisioned as part of the 24-7 family to go establish a church in Ibiza at IAM5 what did people think they were doing?

Sending us on holiday!!!!?

All the debate about are we a church planting movement is very unsettling if you have been sent by the movement to plant!!!

Why so frightened? It's hardly like we are going to become a denomination or anything like that, but so what if we did?

I think we need new expressions of community all over the place enhancing and bringing flavour to the existing body of Christ.

I feel we can do this without being divisive.

I grew up in Belfast and I know that a few who read this blog still live there. I have seen divisivness at it's worst. lack of unity etc.. it's horrible and it sucks. But it's hardlly like a bunch of guys starting new communities around prayer, mission and justice are going to be devisisve?

As to the other one about we'll only plant in places were there isn't already a valid expression of church, what about Kansas City Boiler community?

It doesn't make sense that we are even having this debate, it's almost laughable, when we as a movement are already doing these things and giving permission for them to happen.

Lets stop back peddling and dilly dallying and get on and be all who we are meant to be.

From where I am sitting; having been given permission, I think we should plant, plant, plant.

I hope that's clear.

Maybe it's just the word people are frightened of:

church plant, church plant, church plant, church plant, church plant, church plant, church plant, church plant, church plant, church plant, etc...


Stu Hassard said...

Stuart Hassard here from 24-7 Italia Team, thanks for posting on our blog. We were all encouraged and blessed that you were praying for us.

Two of the most important things that God has impressed on us over the 3 week mission are the importance of Intercession and Unity. Something which you also refer to on your blog and im sure you agree with.

Finally, on mission, you will be aware that sometimes the locals get a little too friendly to members of the group (often the girls), it is sometimes useful to have a code in case someone wants help or is feeling uncomfortable with the situation. Our code for when a female wanted help from someone else in the team was inspired by one of the transmission talks:

"There's a monkey on the handbrake!"

This even turned into our catchphrase for the trip so thanks for that great story, Priceless.
Grace and Peace to all your teams.
Blessings in Christ, your brothers and sisters from Team Italia


Sheena said...

what you describe sounds to me just like the book of acts. i don't remember any part of the book of acts where they debate the validity of what they called their meeting together. they just went about their lives (which happened to consist of feeding the poor, healing the sick, freeing the deamonized and seeking God!) and stayed connected in community. we call that 'the early church'. they didn't think of it as "church planting", but that's what it was.

Linda-Joy said...

ditto - good one sheena

dan said...

Brian ...

I'm really appreciative of the posts you stick here on your blog ... they are often timely and speak into issues or topics, etc. that I'm chewing on ...

So thanks,


Anonymous said...

so brian...not 100% sure where you stand on this whole church plant issue yet ... to do it ... not to do it ... hmmmm ...i don't feel you're making yourself clear - i think you need to use this site more freely as a way to expressssss yourself matey - let your real feelings out about things - so whaddaya reckon????
love from samie x

Kirk Bartha said...

Brian, it's leaders (servants)like you who are expanding the periphery, borders, Zechariah's "ring of fire" around the kingdom (church). The ever expanding enthusia of the Spirit. Nothing on earth (or under it) can stop the kinetic spiritual life giving flow.

Our metaphors of the kingdom cheapen when we started putting all that enthusiastic kinetic living stuff into cheap terms like "evangelism" "discipleship" "mission" - even "kingdom" is cheap if it means something less than Jesus Christ fully alive and expressive within the Trinity at work in this His world alongside, but never at the expense of, us - his family and friends.

praying for you everyday these days.

lisa said...

hhhhmmm, you're reminding me of byron. his motto these days is "Stop talking about church-- BE the church."

Billy Kennedy said...

Or, think about it in another way - Jesus' command was to make disciples (not plant churches). But as we have all found out being community is not only the most effective way to disciple it is also the way God intended for us to live.

Let's say you knew nothing. No background, no training. You're in Ibiza. You're gathering with a few like minded people exploring what it is to live Christianly. Others get attracted to this community. What do you do? Keep doing what you're doing, of course? You don't have kids and then say to them when they're 3 or 4, 'we're not a real family, so mummy and daddy have decided to send you to the family down the road. They are a real family. Their daddy has spent 3 years being trained how to be a real daddy.' Come on????

miriam said...

i work with a "church planting" the last year...i like to discover new ideas, new resorces... i would go to Ibiza and to speak with you about how are you doing it there.

Brian Heasley said...

Billy great comment, thanks man

Duncan J Sherwin said...

Oi! Brian. So what's your stance on church planting then? eh? stop beating round the bush, man!

Luvving it!