Getting Neighborly…. Russell on House Church

28Sep06

My neighbor and Presby Pastor, Russell Smith, has some great thoughts on House Churches and what the “Classic Church” (his term for traditional/institiutional) can learn from them. Definitely worth checking out:

The Eagle and Child: The Classic Way of Church — what we can learn from House church

Bullet-point Quotes:

1) House churches are intentional. …
The institutional church often times encourages spiritual laziness.
2) House churches are relational. …
The institutional church needs to do a better job of celebrating and communicating relationship — I see that there are lots of deep relationships in institutional churches — the challenge is how to bring new people into those relationships.
3) House churches truly give of themselves. …
There is value in an institution that can create bigger scale programs than just a few people can pull together. But the house church critique still stands — institutional churches have to ask “who is all this stuff for?” and if we say “for us” then we ought to tremble.
4) House churches are not empires — Institutional churches often become little more than extensions of the head pastor’s ego.
5) House churches are not slick — there’s a local megachurch here with the slogan emblazoned boldly on their sign “A real church for real people” — Now I defend this church to my colleagues, but let’s be honest about the irony in that slogan.
5) House churches are non-programmatic. House church folks don’t really want to “run the bases” of the Purpose driven life. …
And honestly they’re right — most of the programs I’ve been through are nowhere near as life changing as they’re hyped.

Go, Russell, Go. One of the things I appreciate about Russell is his deeply generous spirit.

I love my neighborhood. It is so cool to have neighbors like this. Next weekend we’re going on a neighborhood camping trip with about 6 families from our street. I’m looking forward to getting to know folk better.

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