Monday, 8 December 2008

To be written...

... i've been challenged on a few big things recently - all of which very much blog-worthy. This is me officially committing to getting round to it at some point in the next few days!

Thursday, 4 December 2008

Learning to swim.

Over the last couple of weeks I've started thinking about Deeper. That's the name (at least for now) of Vinelife's gap year/ministry training programme and if I stay on after this internship one of my main roles will be to co-ordinate it. So it's been tres exciting thinking about what sort of stuff the programme will contain and how we'll go about it. Part of this has been spending some of time finding out how other people do it, essentially so I can steal all the best ideas! There's this church in Cleveland which used to run something called 'Focus Academy' that took a very holistic approach to the whole thing - I especially liked their idea of a built-in fitness programme!!

The whole research process has also started me thinking a lot more about ministry in general and, for example, how I might go about leading a church in the future. It's really interesting to see the different emphases different leaders/churches have in terms of both aspects of leaderships and also methods and strategies. I'm still very much a 'work-in-progress' in terms of sorting mine out but I think it is important to clarify where you stand on certain things and what your values/goals/passions are, so as not to just drift along randomly picking things up for a while, dropping them, and then carrying on to the next thing. For me, the biggest issue in my head at the moment is how to go about discipleship. For if you're not creating a culture of people sold out for Jesus then ultimately your church will just become a personality cult - seasons of growth/decline dictated to solely by the quality/identity of the leadership. Obviously the leader has a massive responsibility towards the group, but if you're not putting strategies in place to help individuals develop a personal and active faith then you'll end up with a church that more resembles a stagnant structure (albeit sometimes a very attractive one) rather than a lvining, growing organism.

Which brings me back round to Deeper. Not only is the preparation of it exciting but the prospect of being able to do some hardcore discipleship with people is doubly so. We just need to find some people to sign up now - so if you think you might be interested, keep your eye out for details in the new year!

P.S. I'm hoping to get back on the train to poetry town over the Christmas hols so make sure you watch out for the next installment of 16 Steps - we'll get there eventually!