Sunday, February 15, 2009

Wanting Simple To Stay Simple

On of the best aspects of Simple/Organic/Missional Church (SOM)  is that in essence,  it is a movement of the "non experts".  A movement of regular people.  People living average, nondescript lives, seeing ministry as life and not a religious calling.  Obediently, simply, and in daily discovery, walking out what it means to join in the work of Christ on earth. 

 Jesus Himself choose men as His foundational disciples that were simple in lifestyle and were not known for great dissertations of knowledge.  In fact, it is quite sad how many times Jesus became frustrated with the dullness and lack of understanding in those He had gathered around Him.  Yet, they were the men chosen to spread The Kingdom.  He knew they would have the Holy Spirit to led them and that would be sufficient.  

 A few years ago I was home sick and turned on the television to see if something on it that day would help my boredom.  I went from talk show to talk show, amazed to find that each one had an expert as a guest.  For each topic change, another expert would be interviewed and all their knowledge expunged.  Interestingly, the last expert I saw was a man from Australia who told us that one aspect about the United States that the world found irritating was that we were a nation of "experts" in everything!  Or at least, thought we were.  I found that funny and a bit hypocritical , since he himself was promoted as an expert on the U.S!

I think this tendency to expertise and the hunger for knowledge, is a world wide and very human phenomena.   We look to the experts to speed our progress and to lessen the work it takes on our part to gain insight.
Even though I don't understand most of it;  I personally love reading and listening to the recent discoveries in the field of Quantum Nano Physics.  Science is now discovering that we are actually made up of tiny particles of light, and are exploring simultaneous realities that coexist with our own!  That's cool stuff! (As a Christian, I find this fascinating in how it relates to Scripture but that is another blog to write.)

I'm wondering how long it will take, in this movement of SOM,  for the "experts" to arise and begin to manage this work of God.  When, once again, the average Christian is sidelined because he/she does not have enough training, theological understanding, organizational endorsement or have written enough books to gain expertise status.  

I was in a movement years ago, where the leader was known for being a simple guy, saved from a life of sin .  He continually spoke on everyone being a minister, the simplicity of hearing and seeing God work, evangelizing, and seeing the supernatural "naturally". Churches were in a "flat" organizational relationship, each seen as autonomous fellowships joined through common values.  In the span of a very short time, this movement slid into organizational requirements, theological training for those called to leadership, and top down management.  They started out as a movement and became a denomination as the simple became less important and qualification (expertise)  esteemed.

Am I saying that there is no place for learning from those God has given insight, understanding and good communication skills?  Absolutely not!  We gain greatly from each other and the teaching gift in operation.  We should always have teachable and trainable hearts. Not just toward God, but with each other. However, let us keep our tendency to expertise ism to the Holy Spirit, and not to one another.  God qualifies each of us and will be faithful to equip and enable us on the unique journey we  walk in regards to this life.

1 John 2:27 says; "And as for you, the anointing which you received from Him abides in you, and you have no need for anyone to teach you; but as His anointing teaches you about all things, and is true and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you abide in Him."


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