Preparing for Fruitfulness with Missional Communities
I believe that God is leading us through a season of pruning in the church as we go through this Covid-19 pandemic. Things that used to be fruitful for us in the past have been taken away because of the restrictions on social distancing. However, I also believe that the time has now come for us to start preparing for a season of fruitfulness. This requires us to be thoughtful, prayerful and intentional as we follow Jesus into the new realities that lie on the other side of this plague.
I think that we should not simply rush to restore what was before. I believe that Jesus has something better for us in terms of ministering to lost and broken people with his love, so we need to have ears to hear what he is saying to us through the Spirit.
With that in mind, I believe God is calling me to start a Missional Community within our church. "What is a missional community?" you may ask. Greg Finke of Dwelling 1:14 defines a missional community this way:
A smaller group of people who gather regularly in order to support each other as they learn to seek, recognize and respond to what Jesus is doing around them every day as he carries out his redemptive mission. (Joining Jesus on His Mission, Greg Finke, p. 154)
When we gather, the first half hour will begin with an ice-breaker question, followed by about 20 minutes of teaching. During the last hour, we will reflect on questions like: How did you see God at work recently?, What has Jesus been teaching you in his Word?, What kind of conversations are you having with pre-Christians?, What good can we do around here?, or How can we help you in prayer? We will end our time together in prayer.
The goal will be to make Missional Communities reproducible within our church. The goal will be to set things up so that anyone can lead a Missional Community anywhere. To that end, the teaching time will be recorded so that other Missional Communities can use it. All that I ask is that leaders of Missional Communities receive training before they start, and meet with me and other Missional Community and small group leaders once a month after they start.
If you would like to be part of a missional community, please email me before you go to bed on Monday, January 25. I will then email you the Zoom link for our first gathering which will be on Tuesday, January 26 from 7:00 to 8:30 pm. If things go well, we will meet on the second and fourth Tuesday of each month after that. When restrictions on social gatherings are lifted, we can explore the possibility of meeting in person and what that might look like.