Great day at Buzz in DC today. Very thought-provoking and encouraging. I am starting to think that many quarters of evangelicalism are starting to get the balancing temporal and eternal concerns thing (aka as the social justice / gospel balance). But there’s another dynamic at work here too and that’s the incarnational / attractional balance, of which Mike Frost has written and spoken so eloquently. You’ll see these themes below, but in summary, a major focus of this conference has not been growing large churches (attractional) but it’s been getting out into the community and making both temporal and eternal differences in the lives of neighbors (incarnational).
There were three speakers today.
- Mark Batterson of National Community Church in DC led off.
- Then Tim Stevens of Granger Community Church.
- And Craig Groeschel of LifeChurch.tv was the final speaker.
Here’s what struck me from Mark Batterson’s talk on The Spy Rules, Part 1
Know your Mission
- Mark showed a video of a number of folks being baptized and it had a marvelously focusing effect on the mind.
“What am I doing that I need to stop doing?”
- We all have fig trees in our life that we need to curse
- “What am I not doing that I need to start doing or start doing again?”
- Barna: 61% of kids who grew up in church eventually stop going to church
- We need to incarnate ourselves into culture.
- In today’s society, musicians and movie makers are the chief theologians.
- When we take advantages of resonances between today’s culture and biblical truth, we are following what Paul did in Acts 17.
- When we quote the Bible, we gain credibility with Christians
- When we quote non-biblical sources, we gain credibility with non-Christians
- We need to read strategically.
Maintain a natural pace.
- Churches don’t need sermons well-preached, they need lives well-lived.
- There’s a need for a family / ministry balance and a work / play balance.
3 Resolutions Mark made this year:
- Don’t do work-related email on days off.
- Use all avail vacation days.
Not more than 30 nights a year away from the family.
- Don’t be deceived by the appearance that every speaking opportunity is “an amazing opportunity.”
- Mark also limits himself to only one evening away from the family for anything church related.
- We must keep a Sabbath.
Vary your patterns
- Love people when they least suspect it and deserve it.
- The best ads have an aspect of unexpectedness.
- Leadership is keeping what is sacred from becoming routine.