This week I have begun reading Dan Kimball's recent book, "They Like Jesus But Not The Church." A great read that I think all followers of Christ, and church leaders with a heart for reaching emerging generations ought to read.

At the beginning of the book he gives a great definition to what has become quite the buzz word recently within the Church. The word...missional. It is such a new word that my computer's spell checker does not even recognize it. What does missional mean? He sums it up like this...

-Being missional means that the church sees itself as being missionaries, rather than having a missions department, and that we see ourselves as missionaries right where we live.

-Being missional means that we see ourselves as representatives of Jesus "sent" into our communities, and that the church aligns everything it does with the missio dei (mission of God).

-Being missional means we see the church not as a place we go only on Sunday, but as something we are throughout the week.

-Being missional means that we understand we don't "bring Jesus" to people but that we realize Jesus is active in culture and we join him in what he is doing.

-Being missional means we are very much in the world and engaged in culture but are not conforming to the world.

-Being missional means we serve our communities, and that we build relationships with the people in them, rather than seeing them as evangelistic targets.

-Being missional means being all the more dependent on Jesus and the Spirit through prayer, the Scriptures, and each other in community.

I believe that if we, Christ's Church, begin to embody these very concepts we will begin to see great change in our culture and in the hearts of those within it.


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