Thursday, March 12, 2009

Organic Church

I don't buy organic produce unless it's on sale.

I'm too cheap.

But there is this notion of organic church out there that I do buy into. I'm not sure how to concisely explain it, because it's smooshy, and messy and not everyone who likes the idea of organic church agrees on what an organic church looks like.

Here's what I think it is:

-Organic church isn't about a building or an infrastructure or a program; it's about people living in community.
-Organic church grows naturally out real life and real relationships; it isn't a thing we do; it's who we are.
-Organic church is missional. It's a group of people committed to each other and committed to impacting the world with the LOVE that has changed them.

-Organic church is Jesus with Hands and Feet. It's in the public schools tutoring. It's serving the homeless and the poor. The organic church knows the poor, and the "least of these", sometimes it is "the least of these."

-Organic church flourishes under pressure, because it needs little overhead to survive.

-Organic church can meet a the bar, or the coffeehouse, or in a living room. It can meet in a school or a rec center, but there probably is no steeple to proclaim it's presence.

-Organic church is NOT "McChurch, would you like fries like that?" It's more like the Army Rangers, or the Marines. Frontlines. Incognito. Willing to take "one" for the team.

-Organic church is people on a mission - War Buddies, after all, make the best of friends.

-Organic church embraces the traditions of the past that enhance worship, but is quick to dismiss the ones that are no longer relevant to their place and time.

-Organic church isn't hierarchical. It's smooshy, with ebb and flow. Jesus is the head, and everyone is part of the priesthood.

-Organic church is sort of intentionally not flashy - purposefully unimpressive.

-Organic church is perfect for our time.

What do you think? Could this idea take wings, or is it too idealistic? Can it work everywhere, or is it culture specific (China, but not here. Inner-city, but not suburbia) How would you manage the growth of a organic church? Or would growth be a non-issue because something so structureless is doomed to failure? What would be lost if the traditional "program" oriented church went extinct?

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