May 16, 2009

The Future of The Brook (Less is More)

This past Thursday night in our Leadership Forum we began the conversation about where we are headed as a church - discovering WHO God has called us to be as a body and WHAT He has called us to do. I'm fairly sure that no one person could have absorbed all that we talked about - and we didn't even come close to covering everything. The conversation is just beginning! This is why in the weeks to come I want to address several of the opportunities that lie in our path as a church.

One opportunity that we have at The Brook is to simplify! Thom Ranier makes the statement in his book, Simple Church, "As a whole, cluttered and complex churches are not alive." I think it's fair to say that while we may not be a very complex church, we by all means are a bit cluttered! You can reach a point where there are so many things to choose from - so many ministries trying to wrangle, recruit, and accomplish - that people don't know where to start or what to choose. And most often - in this situation - people will choose not to choose. They're left paralyzed.

It's no secret that I'm a minimalist. I'm not sure if it's time, experience, my ADD, or all of the above, but I've gotten to a place where complex just won't cut it for me. Less is more! And this applies in so many ways to so many things. In our case, MORE INFO = LESS CLARITY. Too much info tears the big picture into so many small pieces that vision is hopelessly lost. And bringing it even closer to home, more ministries, more events, more teams, the more more more we add of this and that to the picture...CLARITY is forfeited. As the people of God we cannot sacrifice being clear about WHO we are and WHAT the Lord has called us to do.

This clarity we're talking about has to do with being clear about our vision. I'm going to talk more about this in my next post. Until then keep thinking on this idea of less is more. I leave you with Aubrey Malphurs wisdom on this matter: "You won't do ministry that really matters until you define what really matters!" The days ahead at The Brook are about defining what really matters.

Info & Quotes included from Church Unique, by Will Mancini.


Edge - Phantom Toad said...

I'm going to ask a question as honest and non-finger-pointing as I can. Just a question.

How would you respond if someone said that most modern churches resemble social clubs or restrictive country clubs than they do non-profit organizations that feed the hungry, shelter the homeless and educate the uneducated?

How does the church re-gain its mission to spread the gospel making disciples and what does that look like on a practical basis every day?

Jef Larremore

Brian Mayfield said...

To say "most churches" do anything is a difficult accusation. I know that many churches are beginning to see that we have veered off the path in how we spend our time, money, resources, etc.... I think more Christians (and churches as a result) are starting to see the necessity to live out their faith - we're seeing the consumerism that has crept into the church beginning to be exposed and called what it is.

I know where you're coming from with your thoughts. All I can say is that it begins with US - in our own homes and our own lives.