Sunday, March 11, 2007

Style vs Substance

Book Review: Organic Church: Growing Faith Where Life Happens
I'll be honest - a few pages into this book I wasn't enjoying it. Having got used to the often understated approach of emerging church type books I found Neil Cole's gung-ho writing style quite annoying. However, as the book's proposition sounded interesting I perservered and I'm extremely glad I did. There's some superb material in this book, for instance the Simple Church model it proposes, an obvious incarnational DNA, the voice of real experience, and lots of very quoteable one-liners. Here's a few of my faves:
"We need to lower the bar on how church is done and raise the bar on what it means to be a disciple."
"A growing number of people are leaving the institutional church for a new reason. They are not leaving because they have lost their faith. They are leaving to preserve their faith."
"There is a vast dfference between delegated authority and distributed authority... Authority is distributed to each person to accomplish all God has for the person, without needeing layers of intermediaries to pass that authority down. One's cover is found in his or her position in Christ, not in human positions above in the chain of command"
In summary then, this book is manna from heaven for anyone braving the desert sands that lie beyond church-as-we-know-it in hope of eventually entering a more fruitful future.

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1 comment:

JW said...

There's a lot of wisdom there; does the church need to keep up with the Joneses? We should be playing a different game, and being transformed as a body to change the world, and you don't need to buy lots of coffee to do that.

Oh and I'm still friends with the word delegation, it doesn't have any of those negative conotations to me and I'd prefer to keep it that way. :) It's all serving God!