I was ordained 40 years ago at a church in Kansas, but I’m not in Kansas anymore. I live in upstate New York, but it is much more than a statement about location. I live in a different world. You do too. The 21st century is a world away from 1970, especially in that small Kansas town. We live in a chaotic world, yet God is bringing something good out of the chaos of our times.
In Acts 10-11, Peter’s life is totally changed in a matter of days. Obedient to a vision God gives to Peter, where God tells him to do something he was always taught the Scriptures forbade, his world is transformed. Now he knows God accepts people he was taught to reject. And he follows the Spirit’s lead.
The world could never go back to the way it was before that day, and it will never go back to the way it was in the 20th century. The world of Google and Facebook is not just about new technology; it’s an emerging world that is fundamentally different. And the emerging Church is different in the same way -
- Creating communities of trusting relationships
- Sharing and giving away what we know and create
- Giving everyone an opportunity to be part of what God is doing
- Staying flexible, traveling light, changing as we need to
- Connecting with people anywhere, anytime around common causes
Isn’t this what God calls the Church to be? But it’s not descriptive of much of the Church’s history, nor of the 20th century Church.It is, however, increasingly descriptive of the Emergent Church.