So I floated a sort of crazy, impractical idea to Element's board of directors this morning, something I believe God has been wanting me to put before them, and we have begun talking about it, and it appears do-able, and I'm being really vague because the notion is only a few hours out of my heart and not everyone on the board has had a chance to weigh in, and we still have to decide how it might work and then it has to be approved by the board and it's amazing I didn't get laughed at by anybody (not because our board is rude or derisive or in any way unsupportive, but because it really is a "You wanna do what?" kind of idea).
I want to do something radical and ridiculous to show Jesus that Element really is passionate about the glory of God and the gospel of the kingdom.
Yesterday, I had lunch with Dr. Ray Ortlund, whose voice and vision I am so thankful to God for putting in my life. As I pulled into the parking lot at the restaurant, this compelling idea of mine* was heavy in my thoughts. During our conversation, not having mentioned anything about it or anything close to it, Ray is talking about the dangers of being "safe" in ministry and the benefits of being "scary" and then he said, "I wonder sometimes if God ever looks down at us and says, 'Whoa. Now that was bold'." The implication of course is that God doesn't do that (all that often) about us because we aren't really doing bold things. We're doing provocative things, we're doing effective things perhaps, and we're doing attractive things. But what about bold?
I heard that as a word from God to go for it.
So it looks like we will be going for it. I'm excited.
I'll share the details in this space soon enough (but maybe not for another few weeks), but I am excited and anxious and overjoyed about the unhesitating willingness of those I get to do ministry with to understand that "missional" can't just be a buzzword, that it means being incarnational and that being incarnational means emptying ourselves.
* I say "idea of mine," but it's not in any way original to me. We won't be the first church to have done this. If we do it, I hope to learn from those who've done it, just how they're pulling it off.