Mission South West

Last night we met together with the Mission South West team.

We are a small team that are committed to a common vision and purpose for the area of the UK where we live/work. Rather than going to a certain church building on a Sunday we are a network of small missional groups or simple churches that network with each other relationally. It’s nobody’s “thing” and it’s really exciting!

Our common vision is to see a movement of Jesus-disciples and simple churches multiplying across the South West of England.

Two things stood out to me from last night….

The first thing was that some members of the team were reflecting on their own journey. They used to meet in a hired room, sat in rows and followed the traditional charismatic routine (Worship/Sermon/Ministry) After reading Neil Cole’s “Organic Church” they felt God was leading them to stop meeting in the hired room and instead to focus on making disciples through home based groups. By their own admission it has been a challenging and at times bumpy road! Throughout this though God has been speaking to them from the words of Jesus in John 12:24 about how a grain of wheat remains on its own unless it falls to the ground and dies. They shared last night about how they are learning even more about this falling to the ground and dying! Letting go of old traditions and ways of “doing” church were really just the start of the process! God has continued to take them away from comfort and security and has led them further into a life of mission and giving themselves away for the sake of people who do not know Jesus. We thanked God for them last night and encouraged them to keep going!

The second thing was that we shared about the story of Elijah. Because we have just had a baby and named him Elijah our other 3 children were very interested in reading more about the guy in the Bible called Elijah (1 Kings 17-20) So we have been reading His story as a family. What hits me though is how Elijah is sent first to the wilderness. He learns to be obedient to Jesus when there is nothing! God even provides for him through the birds! Then he gets sent to a widow with nothing. Then he gets sent to the King (the big gig!) and has the spectacular moment on the mountain. Then he is running for his life and wants to die! I find it pretty comforting that Elijah had a load of ups and downs but God stuck with him! 

So we had a good night reporting back about our groups and the encouragements/challenges. We prayed for each other and also shared what God was saying through the scriptures and through prophetic words. And we shared what God is asking us to before our next get together!

Do you live in the South West? Are you interested in mission and discipleship? We’d love to hear from you : ben@benandcatherine.org

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Nigel Mohammed August 5, 2014 at 9:11 am

I am interested in Organic/Simple Church. I have only skimmed the surface of it but traditional institutional church has been unsustainable for a long time now. I live in West Sussex, do you know of any missional type simple organic ‘churches’ in my area. I would very much appreciate it.
In Christ, Nigel Mohammed

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