#VergeChi :: Missional Community Panel Discussion


This is a panel discussion with Alan Hirsch, Jo Saxton, Dhati Lewis, Todd Engstrom, and Jeff Vandersteldt.

What advice would you give to those who are just starting out in this whole realm of missional community?

  • Approach this whole conversation with that of need and understanding.
  • As we seek to be missional, come with a posture of humility.
  • Defining missional: We are God’s people, saved by God’s power, making disciples in all of life.
  • Don’t think of missional as a new program.
  • Be deeply theological, not pragmatic.
  • When starting, spend your time learning and ask alot of questions.
  • Ask questions of your organization and your church.
  • When you make a transition to missional, tell alot of stories. Not just positive stories, but also stories of failure.
  • Just because you’re a pioneer and you’re doing something revolutionary, it doesn’t mean it’s going to go quickly.
  • When you’re ending something, end them with a celebration.
  • Celebrate and honor what God has done in the past because it gives people faith for the future.
  • Never underestimate the power of paradigm.
  • One of our greatest resources is to learn to dream again.
  • Do something and don’t be afraid to fail.
  • All you need is 16% for an idea to be a reality. But it’s not just any 16%. Find the innovators and teach them and empower them.
  • If you’re going to fail, at least harvest the learning from the failure.
  • Sometimes we are so afraid of failure. Mistakes are inevitable.
  • If the leaders don’t acknowledge failure, then you don’t create an environment that is willing to try new things.
  • “We’re messing up, but look at how much we’re learning.”
  • You teach what you know, but you reproduce who you are.
  • Authenticity is the apologetic of our day. People want something that is real.
  • You can’t lead people where you haven’t been.
  • We have talked long enough. That’s not why we went into ministry. We went into ministry to get stuff done, so let’s get some stuff done.
  • Context forces you to contextualize.
  • Learn to think like a beginner, not an expert.
  • The best way to learn is to put yourself in a situation where you don’t know what you’re doing.
  • If you expect that your people are going to make a switch faster than you are, then you’re a crazy person.
  • We see the Lord with an accessible life. People got to see Jesus do stuff. People got to be with him.
  • People need to be able to know what faith is with someone.
  • The church is a family, not an orphanage.
  • If you’re going to step forward into something that is new, then you need to have confidence in someone that isn’t you.

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