12 December, 2007

What is The Journey?

It's been a long hiatus on the blog scene for The Journey but we've still been active. As I look back through the posts it's fun to see how we've grown. Along the way each member of the group has come up with ways of explaining to people just who we are or what it is that we do. This is my standard answer to the question, "What is The Journey?":

The Journey is a church of mission. To be a part of the core means that you too have a mission. On the broad scale this is obviously the mission of Jesus but how that plays out is different for each of us. Each year we let the community know where we feel God is calling us, how the community can pray for us and how they can become involved in our mission. Missions range from joining local neighborhood councils to befriending our neighbors to raising our kids in the Way of Jesus to coaching basketball, etc. After this we live out these missions and come alongside one another in support, weather it be child minding, house cleaning before a party, praying, financing, etc. In this way our missions become intertwined as well as our networks of friends. We have values as a community too. We value the centrality of the Bible and how it speaks into the life of our community. When we gather on Sundays for brunch someone usually has prepared to lead a discussion centered on a chapter or two of Scripture. In discussion we try to work out how the passages apply both to our last week and our next week of ministry. We also value our involvement with those who normally wouldn't find themselves in institutional churches. We each aim to have about 50% of our network be people who would not yet consider themselves followers of Christ. To do this we tend to live life outside the institutional church and become intentional about spending free time in third-spaces such as pubs, coffee shops, etc. We also value service and believe that unless we serve our local community in tangible ways we are not actually following Christ. We value fun and believe that life in Christ is exciting and fulfilling (even though it can be extremely stretching and challenging) so you will often find us hosting or attending parties, concerts and pubs. As a group we hold each other accountable to these values as well as try to encourage and support one another as Christ would. I have never felt so alive in church then I do now. This is because church is not a noun but a verb. We never go to church, we just church. When one of us is life-coaching, she is churching, when I'm meeting with a teen, I'm churching. When we party with our neighbors, we church. Church has become alive and vibrant and integrated into our daily lives. What's more, if I don't church then The Journey suffers. I have never felt more empowered of enabled to be a disciple of Christ than I do now.

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