Showing posts from January, 2011

Is it Mobile & Reproductive? - Discipleship 122

What I'm learning most right now about the discipleship of people and youth is based on two questions:

1. Is it mobile?
2. Is it reproductive?

The wave of the information age has done a lot of great things in our world. Technological advances like the internet, cell phones & handheld devices (pda's, ipods, psp's, ds's, etc.) have made our entertainment much more mobile and reproductive. The challenge for the church and for youth ministry specifically is to view these cultural values or norms as assets in the mission of discipleship and the battle for relevance of the Christian faith in today's emerging youth culture.

If we know that a growing number of youth and adults are using technology to enhance their educational experience and personal growth or development (entertainment, connectedness, etc.), why then wouldn't we consider how to use these same tools to develop people spiritually?

Ministry and more specifically discipleship, that is mobile and reprod…

Contextualize This!! - Discipleship 121

I love to dream. I spend a lot of time developing strategies, understanding systems, looking for patterns and examining behavior. My mission of observation has often led me to some interesting places. One such place is this emerging idea of contextualized discipleship - developing life long, devoted followers of Christ.

Some things we did as kids, we don't stop doing as adults. Remember the game copy-cat? You would simply mimic the behavior or words of someone else for the soul purpose of annoying them. I can remember engaging in such activity as a child with one of my older cousins being my muse. For babies, being a copy-cat is healthy to learn things such as speech, crawling, walking and other interactive behaviors. For toddlers, grade-school children and older adults...being a copy-cat is less appealing and beneficial.

Why is it then that in the world of church, and specifically youth ministry, we love to copy what others are doing? If someone generates any type of momentum, we…

Strategy - Discipleship 120

One of my favorite Christmas gifts of all-time is the board game Strageo. I can remember the year that my cousin Lance and I both received this game for Christmas. We spent the next 7-10 days playing this game non-stop!! It combined all the elements that we loved...strategy, deception, conquest and competition.

Sometimes I wonder if this is our approach to discipleship. Do we see people as projects or spiritual conquests, and are we in competition with each other to see who can do the most for the sake of the Kingdom? I often wonder how misaligned our motivation to invest in others may be at times.

As a logical, creative thinker...I gotta tell you that I love to strategy. I love creating a system and plan for not only organization, but also development. Man some of the things I have put together over the years look so good on paper!! The problem seems to be when I see the strategy as the end goal rather than the people whom the strategy is supposed to serve.

I think that at times our …

Transitions - Discipleship 119

Transitions seems to be a theme that is saturating my life time and time again. As a bit of a self-proclaimed sports junkie, the theme of transitions is something that has always sparked my interest. The key to any team's success in sports like soccer, basketball, hockey and volleyball is how well they perform in the transitions. Transitional defense and transitional offense separate the mediocre teams from the elite teams. In one aspect, a team capitalizes on the mistakes of its' opponent and goes on the offensive. In the other, a team is able to recover from its' own mistake and defend their territory. In these moments of transition the system or the structure doesn't really matter, but the response to the situation and the set of circumstances does.

Discipleship is often filled with transitions. These transitions can occur during a leadership change, a vision realignment or a different systematic implementation of ministry philosophy. In these transition moments, wh…

Creative Partnership - Discipleship 118

A few days ago I was able to catch a documentary on the Pacific ocean while watching history television that has sparked a lot of internal thought and speculation. The premise of this program was examining how ocean volcanoes in the Pacific are still active in creating new land masses in our world. Many of the views that were shown were simply stunning...and I found myself marvelling at the creative power of God.

My mind has continued to flirt with this subject matter of creativity; my imagination has been captivated with this theme. I've been drawn to study the creation account of our world from the book of Genesis, and one phrase in particular has held ransom my thoughts over the past few days. After creating the world, God commands His creation to be fruitful and multiply and "to fill the earth." I've often stopped the cognitive process at mammals, humans, birds, fish and reptiles reproducing. But lately I have been thinking about the earth itself and this theme o…