Response to LMC

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Response to LMC

Post by kkuriyama on Mon Jan 08, 2018 8:29 pm

Leading Missional Communities

I always appreciate the balance of concepts and pragmatics from the Breen books. I love that they keep the focus on the discipleship culture more than anything and that they have a clear goal set towards that. It is the foundation of everything and when building these communities, if we’re not striving to create this culture, it will eventually fail or turn into something that’s not what we want.

The organized vs organic idea is brilliant and made me think of the time I met Eli Gautreaux and he said he thought he was “watching them.” It’s something IU Chi Alpha put in the binders a few years ago and it makes me glad because I feel like we’re doing things right. But also, I think if we have a good understanding of how MCs should work, we would eventually get to it.

The person of peace is something I’m still thinking a lot about. I think I agree with it(obviously because it is based scripturally) but I think there are certainly exceptions to some cases. I’m still thinking about it.

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Re: Response to LMC

Post by kellyrenelantz on Tue Jan 09, 2018 6:30 pm

This book was a really good refresher on why we do what we do in Chi Alpha and the mindset we all need to have while doing so. I think a big reminder I needed was that we don't need to be adding more events to our schedules but bring our community alongside us in everyday life. I think that's the biggest thing my girls have felt this year and I feel a little bit responsible for pushing more of the organized and less of the organic.

Reading this book was very good going into the semester because of what it brought to my attention. I think in my next resource team we will talk about this and look at the community we are trying to reach as a whole and figure out where our rhythms and interests align in a way that isn't bombarding our schedule.

I'm really excited to see what kind of multiplication happens in the next few years at Chi Alpha now that we have embraced this new way of discipleship. I think we will see immense growth and communities that grow together naturally.

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Re: Response to LMC

Post by Brittony on Wed Jan 10, 2018 5:18 am

I’ve been thinking a lot about discipleship, how I currently disciple my girls, and how to be better at it. It’s very easy for me to think I’m discipling a girl when there’s an event I need to plan and she can watch me how to put things together and make things happen. What I’ve come to learn is that I this isn’t really discipleship., at least not an in depth one. In “Missional Communities,” the author talks about how to deepen a discipleship; by being together often. “To grow a discipleship culture, it by being together a lot…” I was in agreement and very challenged by this sentence. I had to take a step back and think about how often I am with my girls, and I know I can’t be there every second of every day but I also can do more than what I am putting forth now. They want to hang out more and to be with each other as sisters in Christ in every day life. In this I definitely understand the need for organization and organic aspect of ministry. Not every day is an event for my girls to be entertained or to be highly spiritually influenced, but to really invite them into my life and show them the real Jesus in the situations of their lives. And at the very center of it all needs to be Jesus. For them to know they have victory in Christ in every aspect of their lives is huge. But they don’t always realize it and so when hanging out, outside of Core Group and weekly 1 on 1’s is prime time discipleship opportunities.

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Leading Missional Communities

Post by SHKelly on Wed Jan 10, 2018 5:22 am

Like every book so far, this one is thoroughly engrained in Chi Alpha culture. Our local groups mission statement last year was “We’re a family on mission,” the oft-repeated phrase in this section. I really liked their explanation of oikos as the goal and Missional Communities as the vehicle. That really helps to frame it from the get. Also, the low-key method of identifying “Persons of Peace” is freeing. It allows God to be God in the pursuit of disciple making and for me to just follow his lead, to plant where he’s plowed. The Covenant-Kingdom matrix made a lot of sense to me and helped express things I’ve felt for a while.

Overall, this foundation is something I can see we have, and something we need to continually grow in. I think that I tend towards setting programs and being more structured than spontaneous. In this, I need to grow. I felt this especially last semester when I was trying to build community with my core group guys. I tend to try to set up a weekly game night, or a set hang out, but I didn’t invite them into my rhythms as much.

So, what I plan to implement is growing in the spontaneous, unstructured side of community building. Also, identifying new “Persons of Peace” outside of those in my core group and working to incorporate them will be a goal. I will do these by building “structured spontaneity” into my schedule; eating with new people, going to on-campus events to meet new people, and inviting my core group guys along with me.

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Re: Response to LMC

Post by matthewostermeyer on Wed Jan 10, 2018 2:54 pm

I loved this section of the Breen books. I thought that the points made on missional community were awesome and got me thinking a lot about my own missional community that I am a part of in Chi Alpha. I am in absolute support of the idea of an extended family type feel within a missional community. I think this is one of the most important aspects of a missional community. Students who want to go on mission together need to have genuine love for spending time with one another and not only this but just genuine friendship. Programs and events don’t cut it because in the end what people seek is to have genuine love from a real family in their community, not just a bunch of fun things to do.
Breen had me asking great questions about my own missional community including: is it too large to be effective at times? Is the mission truly shared and are students passionate about it? Do our efforts string people along from event to event? Is being a leader in this community a burden for people?
I also agree strongly with the elements that come to form a solid missional community. It must be a community of discipleship where not only those who are entering into are being discipled but also those who are already a part of it. We ought to have a real desire to grow closer to Jesus and this doesn’t only apply to members but to everyone who is a part of the group. We should be growing closer to Jesus together.
I believe that Breen hit the nail on the head with the chapter regarding people of peace. This was an important element of the lifeshapes chapter in his prior book as well. I agree that it is so necessary for us to understand to look for “people of peace” who will desire to learn and spend time with our community. We can spend far too much time pouring into people who don’t care about us or about growing closer to God.

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Leading Missional Communities Part 1 Response

Post by lleeson on Wed Jan 10, 2018 3:44 pm

Reading this part of this book made me think of Chi Alpha, specifically the staff and core group leaders. I really feel Chi Alpha is starting to look like a family functioning together on mission for God. Sometimes reading these books on “how to be missional” or “how to disciple” can feel unrealistic or don’t give enough practical application to see how it is actually accomplished. But, from what I’ve seen in how our staff interacts with one another and their heart for God and His mission has helped me to see that this outcome “oikos” is very possible!

When I read these chapters, I continued to ask myself, does my Resource Team look like this? Where are we lacking? What are the difficulties and what are our strengths? It made me realize that the hardest thing about this model is transferring leadership. I am (for the most part) not worried about the core group leaders that I disciple. They are all following Jesus and have a desire to build His kingdom with their lives. Yet, the girls they disciple are on all different spectrums of wanting to know or live for Jesus. The MC or RT is supposed to reproduce and so when I think about planning for next year, I get nervous and think, “What if no one steps up? What is people don’t see the vision that God has for the world and for others? What if this can’t continue on?” Yet, fruit has been produced in our ministry and by listening to the Holy Spirit and using books like this to use strategies that Jesus used (like finding people of peace, embracing the vision of making disciples who make disciples, always having a discipleship culture, etc.), we can trust God will continue working through us and more students will become life-long followers of Jesus.

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Re: Response to LMC

Post by DaneMiles on Wed Jan 10, 2018 4:12 pm

This is becoming a theme, but so much of this book has reminded me of the culture of XA. Without knowing it, we spent many hours before the start of the year and during the beginning to strike a balance between "organized and organic" events, pairings, etc. While intuitively this made sense, reading the book helped me better discern why this balance was and is so crucial.

There were many things that stuck out to me in the reading, but I'll focus on just a couple. Up-in-out is something I had been taught and thought I understood by being in Chi Alpha. However, being able to observe other faith communities if been apart of by understanding which of the three elements were least present was fascinating and telling. The up-in-out principle is something I have used with my guys routinely, though without using the terminology. This year I want to do a better job in being explicit with it.

The second element is best put by Breen: "A discipling culture is about encouraging and cultivating the development of a missional lifestyle rather than missional events." This sentence and principle was convicting. While I gravitate to organic gatherings over organized, my thought process would still subconsciously organize missional living as something we do rather than people that we are. This, coupled with the principle that living, breathing MCs are always making disciples has recentered my thinking on what it means to lead and live well for Christ.

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