Breakout Session on Missional Community by Ceasar Kalinowski
We are working through building community through building Ecclesia in those groups.
We want a community that glorifies Christ.
What our plans are for our church or for our model needs to be the structure we choose for our church.
We have to plan for Multiplication! This is a MUST
Let’s define a Mission Community in 4 areas.
1. Missional Community is a Gospel community. (Discover)
a. It is a family, that lives out the mission of God together in a specific area and to a specific people group Displaying the Gospel in a tangible form and declaring the Gospel to others both to those who believe and those who are being exposed.
2. We must be a sent people…A family of Missionaries.
3. We must be a servant people. (Serve)
4. We must be learners! We must be looking to know more. (Grow)
Missional Communities are not defined by Small Groups.
Missional Communities are not defined by a Bible Study.
Missional Communities are not groups of “Brady Bunch” Pastors & Parishioners.
Missional Communities are not about Weekly Meetings aside from the Weekly Service.
So How do we Build Missional Community?
1. Start with Shared Leadership
A Tri-Perspectival Mentaliy helps to build solidarity in leadership and build missional community. i.e. Prophet, Priest & King This very thing bring balance and health to an organization as it grows! Help your leadership identify their role and submit to each other in those areas of strength. These three must be present. If a prophet leads the group become a support group. If a priest leads it will become a Bible study. If a king leads it will become a club. So, you need balance in all three areas in order to build balanced and healthy Missional Communities.
Identify which of the three you are strongest in and which you are weakest in. Then pray for God to bring leaders along to compliment you! This is imperative in building a healthy Missional Community. Then submit to the one who are better than you in certain areas. It will bring freedom and excitement.
2. Build the Missional Community on the Foundation of the Gospel.
Ask this question first: What is the Gospel? You’ll never get the same answer twice! What is the answer? Simple. The Gospel is Jesus! This is a lifestyle and set of rhythms as well. We need to live this out in every aspect of our lives. In otherwords, do ordinary things with a Gospel intention! Lead your community into prayerful dependency in everything that they do! If what you do does not require prayer dependence, then it is your mission not God’s!
When things seem outrageous and insane, maybe we need to realize that it is not us that has to do it, it is God who will do it! In these times, we simply get to be part of what God is doing! Quit doubting, planning, and putting God in a box! Follow Him, Trust Him and lead people in that direction. Lead people to the end of themselves so they have NO choice but to cling to the Cross! That will build a huge amount of faith.
3. Connect with the Culture of the People you are Reaching.
Recognize the cultural and societal markers that define your area. As you plant initially, you will have a specific group and demographic. But, as you grow, multiply and break out, you will begin to expand your influence on more people groups! Make sure you identify and get to know ALL the groups you are reaching.
Do you know the story and history of the people you are reaching? If so, what are the barriers to the Gospel in your area?
Recognize that you are not out to plant a service, but spread the Gospel. Be sure your focus is making disciples. Be sure to keep your eyes set on your people’s future and present hopes.
4. Build your Missional Community on Covenant.
Have your groups commit to hold one another accountable to specific areas and guidelines. This can be simple or complex. Covenant to eat together, serve together, share together, give together, grow together, and work together. All of these things require differing levels of commitment!
Be sure to emphasize the need to do more than meet together. Make sure covenant places focus on living in a Missionary Lifestyle. Make sure it requires studying the Word, Studying Culture, Studying People’s Needs. Be sure that the entire group agrees. Then plan how to live it out!
Have a passion for one another. Then use that passion for your peers to reach out to the people you connect with. That will continue to multiply as the emphasis is on reaching outside your four walls!
You have to be an Acts 1 church before you can be an Acts 2 church! Meaning that the Holy Spirit has to indwell and inspire you to go out and build community and change lives! Acts 1 flung people out on mission to become like Acts 2!
5. Re-Adjust your Schedule, plan and model to make disciples. Re-Orient your lives!
Make sure you find out the best time to reach people. Sometimes a Sunday service is not the time and place. Sometimes Wednesday is not the answer. Sometimes Monday is the answer. This requires you ro re-adjust to the cultural influence and norm. Make sure you are connected and in touch.
When you do this, you will be gin to multiply and change lives. Be intentional. Being intentional is absolutely imperative. Sometimes we need to “breathe out” and be out in the community to reach people. Sometimes we need to “breathe in” and work on discipleship to grow the health for the new converts and seasoned followers! Literal seasons, peoples’ jobs, peoples’ neighborhoods, and many other factors influence how you reach out to the people and make disciples. Sometimes you have to orient and integrate into a community in order to impact and make disciples.
6. Know the Gospel Barriers!
When you identify the barriers to the Gospel in your community, you can begin to craft your communications in order to present the truth in a way that makes disciples! You have to know your opponent before you go to battle. That is a simple wisdom issue.
7. Keep your Missional Communities connected to an Elder!
This creates accountability, purpose and connectivity within the larger group. When the group know that they have a connection to the larger group, they find a better prupose. That Elder is simply an overseer. That Elder does not lead the group! It is a coaching perspective.
8. Develop Strategic Plans together
Work with your teams/groups to set goals and make plans. Help them identify their purposes and goals. Then work to achieve them.
Check in periodically to be sure that are achieving the goals and putting plans into action! This builds confidence and ensures success.
9. Have a plan for Multiplication from the beginning!
Make sure there is a plan to multiply in numbers and in leadership. Mentor the next generation, next regime, next person.
Once a group hits about 20 people (not set in stone, just an estimate) it must multiply. Otherwise, it will begin to shrink! You have to have a plan to split and multiply!
If you don’t do this, the clique develops. The people may be great, but they quit being accepting of the outsiders who come in. Then a group never changes, grows and multiplies. This will kill Missional Community. Really, it will kill community.
10. Empower you leaders!
Tell the people who lead these groups that they have the authority to carry out all of these aspects of building Missional Community. This becomes easier on the Church structure and even the budget. If the people are empowered to be missionaries, serve as learners, Make plans, focus on the Gospel, multiply, etc then success in inevitable!
When this happens it will make it easier to organize church plants! These groups will become self-sustaining and ready to multiply the influence of the Gospel within a community. This is a great way to be intentional about planting more churches!
As the leader of a Missional Community you need to think like the planter of a church with a core group! This creates a sense of ownership. It would also change to outlook for the future. The idea of multiplication would be central! This is a must!
This “core group” mentality will also force the need for the leader’s focus to be on the Gospel. It will be come their primary focus to see the Gospel be multiplied and made famous!
Building a Missional Community requires serious intention and focus. Pray, Plan, and Get to Work!