Tuesday, September 16, 2008

What I Wrote to Curtis

Curtis lives in Canada and is seeking to launch a new ministry endeavor where he lives. Like me, Curtis is searching for some specific answers to burning questions about how to engage the mission of God in the next generations and in ways that are not "traditional church" planting.

I've never met Curtis, but we have a mutual friend in Eric Sandras. He (Curtis) seems earnest, sincere and a bit frustrated. He likes the fact that I refer to my present departure from my former way of life and ministry as The Quest and says that he is on a quest of his own.

What follows is a reply to some emails he has sent to me and to Eric Sandras. I thought you might enjoy peeking in on it:

Hey Curtis:

I appreciate the challenge and the promise of the place you are in. I can't believe how many others I'm already discovering who are on their own sort of "quest". A movement of some kind is being born but is still rather undefined. It's beyond the labels such as "house church" or "emergent" or what have you. It is not just about modalities of church life or the changes in our culture. It's about a hunger that God has put in people like you and me that we can't ignore.

A book you might enjoy is Dan Kimball's "They Like Jesus Not the Church". Not only does Dan share the problems, questions and challenges, he also provides some of what he believes to be helpful in addressing the issues raised.

Beyond that, I have gotten a lot out of The Forgotten Ways (Hirsch), Organic Church (Cole), and the very helpful little "Missional House Churches" by J.D. Payne.

I'm not sure exactly how the Wimber quote goes, but you seem to have stated it the way I remember it. Here are two more:
"Faith is spelled r-i-s-k"
"How many more like YOU do you want?"

One thing I have had to give myself permission to do is to slow down. I feel a compelling urgency to discover and to implement my discoveries. Part of this, I have come to see, is about the desire to find validation for the major decisions I have made to engage The Quest. I am learning to let that go and just be.with what God is showing me. I, too, still have TONS of questions, but The Quest has made me a richer man already (meaning I have grown spiritually a great deal through what I have already been learning).

Wax on, wax off! Paint the fence! Sand the Floor! Paint the house! God will show you why your arms ache so much when He's ready...(right?!)

Shalom, Shalom,
Bill Faris

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