Book Review: Doing Church as a Team

I read all sorts of books, they come, they’re pushed on me, sent to me, given to me and occasionally I even choose some. This is one that has been on my shelves for a long time. I’d even started it once and not finished it, thought it too American and had no idea of who the author was. When you lead a very small church, books written by the mega-church pastor are not always that helpful. Then I was given a talk from the Willow Creek Leadership Summit with…

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Discipleship implies community

I preached about church on Sunday from Colossians (listen here) and a few things have struck me since on further reflection. To love the church, to really love the body of Christ as Jesus does is to love others. To love God and to love your neighbour are intimately and intricately woven together. I didn’t bring that out as well as I could have done and it’s only really hitting me now. Secondly, this feeds into another train of thought that has been swirling around for a while, which is…

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It's more than sharing stuff

I’ve been letting the whole community debate swill around my head a while longer and I realise I’ve been focusing on the sharing of stuff. What stuff do I share, what is mine, how do we share stuff? Etc… The problem with that of course is that I remain resolutely materialistic. My eyes remain fixed on earthly things, I’m worried about my stuff. I’m worried that someone will break my stuff, not give me my stuff back, not share with me their stuff (that I may want), that I’ll pay…

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Revisiting Community Revisited

I think this is the last time I can play with the title…it might be fun but it will get silly! Anyway I was excited by the comments I had on the Revisiting Community post… As a result there is a revision of how close you need to live to someone else to effectively share…10 minutes walk being considered too far and instead bringing that down to 2 minutes. Thoughts? Then there are some suggestions on areas to extend what could be shared. I have some¬†questions that are forming and…

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Book Review: Augustine and His World

I knew very little about Augustine really and this book served as an excellent introduction. It paints a pretty sympathetic portrait and makes excuses for conclusions that have now been widely disregarded (his views on gender and sex for example) but if you know next to nothing as I did then it’s a good place to start. Lion Hudson always do these sort of books really well, plenty of colour, useful photos and illustrations and straight forward explanations. When you move on from the basic you move on from Lion,…

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Revisiting Community

I’ve been continuing the long discussion on community and I’m coming to a number of conclusions. While communal living has numerous attractions it isn’t the solution for the many, I think realistically the majority will never buy into it. On the flip side the status quo holds limited attraction also with many realising it falls short in so many ways. So just like politicians we’re searching for the popular middle ground. What does that look like? How do you move away from the strongly individualistic (where we are right now)…

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An instinct for community

I’m currently reading a book that gives an introduction to the life and thought of Augustine (review to follow soon). I have to admit I didn’t know too much about the great man other than his views on original sin, his influence and the name of his two most famous books. One of the interesting things I’ve learnt was that after his conversion Augustine immediately began experimenting with community. First in Italy in a villa by Lake Como (very nice) and then he insisted on a monastery community when forced…

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