“Fruit” and “Root”


There is a difference between “fruit” and “root” says Frank Viola:

A lot of Christianity — the Christianity that I preach a lot of — is focused on “the fruit” — doing something for God. Looking at the earthly life of Jesus. And of course, trying to imitate it. Instead of focusing on “the root” — the source of life, which is Christ in us, which naturally, organically, and without effort or strain produces the fruit, once it’s tapped into.

Missional Ecumenism

Armstrong-Your-church-is-too-smallAs “ecumenical” as I am. I still struggle with feelings of sectarianism…that my understanding of God is the right one, that there are other Christians that I just can’t work with in good conscience. And so, perhaps, I miss opportunities to be missional together and I miss opportunities to show the unity that is found in Christ Jesus. So, today, I found these words from John Armstrong helpful:

God designed the church to experience union with the Trinity in his eternal love. This love empowers our diverse relationships so that when the world sees us, especially in our respective churches, they should see that the Father loves the world (cf. John 17:20-24). By seeing us loving one another the world can come to know Christ! Simply put, unity would become the divine apologetic for the future as it had been in the ancient church centuries ago….

My friends, if Jew and Gentile were called in the early decades of the ancient church to share life together in the same household, and thus they were no longer to be strangers and aliens, then Christians of all persuasions, twenty centuries later, can find loving, creative and powerful new ways to live in the “same household” of God’s unity today. Could it be that our real problem is that our view of the church is “too small”? We think our church – our understanding about the church– is right and thus we gather with people like us and have nothing to do with others not just like us.

You can see the whole post over at Missio Alliance. John is the author of Your Church Is Too Small

(Not Quite) 20 Questions To Understand Your Mission Field

Paul Krentz from Texas writes about understanding your local mission field. He offers a list of 20 questions to help you. The following are most (but not all) of them. To see the full list, you’ll have to hit his site:

  • Where do you need to go to “listen” to your culture?
  • What/Who are the “gods” in your culture?
  • What are the visible signs of wealth? Of poverty?
  • Who is moving into your community?
  • What are the “hot button” social issues currently being debated?
  • How does the history of your community affect life right now?
  • What are peoples’ hopes and dreams in your community?
  • What is considered “art” in your context?
  • What are the key slogans or phrases known by people in your community?
  • Where do people invest their resources of money and time?
  • What is the reputation of religious leaders and churches?
  • How does your community define peoples’ concept of “the good life”?
  • What do people think about Jesus?

Some Missional Tweets for Your Weekend

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