The new adventure has begun.
Last Sunday I had the privilege of contributing for the first time as part of the Mercy Town community. So I have to be honest and say, it was a rather vulnerable morning. We were in a new hall, with new layout, and for some of the folks it was vulnerable having a new member of the team who was going to provide some leadership, adding to what has been laid in to the foundation of the community for the last few years.
I saw eyes looking at me - some delighted for the new adventure; some intrigued by what the future may look like; and I think some were close to fearful - 'to what extend is our world about to change?'
The answer to all those questions is simply "We do not know? God rarely does things our way". It is such a privilege to join in such a wonderful God story with an established, raw, naked, honest sense of community.
Maybe one of the most obvious questions I asked myself the week before was: "Who was God going to send us?"
That was not very difficult to answer. The community was already full of "dones" & "nones".
"Dones" are those who are "done with church". whatever their experience may be, they love Jesus but have often been deeply disillusioned by the excessive professionalistic, corporate nature of the church. Added to this they may have had some relational experiences that have damaged their weary souls. David Kinnaman calls them the "Nomads and Exiles". But the Spirit of God has drawn many of them them back to this authentic community. More of them are coming!
"Nones" are those who have no or little Jesus or church exposure. They are wonderfully real, raw and often aggressively anti. Their language is crusty. Their perceptions are in no way biblical and their questions are deeply truthful, without Christianizing them. Many more of these are on their way to us. Are we OK with that?
That is who we believe will come into our world. Are we ready for more just like us to join the journey? We have been faithful with the little, now the Father will afford us the opportunity to be faithful with the many.
Fun times at the frontline of LA urban evolution.