I still believe in church – believe that real community can happen because of the Cross, and a local church actually can reflect the local population, crossing all kinds of barriers.
But, it doesn’t happen with programs. It doesn’t happen by paying a professional religious leader with a string of letters behind his name and expecting him (or the local missionary couple) to bring in the different skin tones and make sense of it all. It doesn’t happen by buying a building, putting up a sign with the word “CHURCH” and having a grand opening weekend. It doesn’t happen just because there is money available in an account or a vacant spot on the denomination’s map of its churches.
Church happens when people dig deep in the mud of messy lives, culture, relationships, tragedies and victories. Because, church sprouts from relationships and living, with authenticity and depth – but it can’t be programmed or controlled or launched into existence.
(via Front Porch Inspired)