One of the key things that emerged from our discussion on values was how do we ensure that having values isn’t just a meaningless “paper exercise”? There is no point in having values if all they do is appear on a web site and get discussed by some leadership group occasionally. Our values are the DNA of who we are as a movement of Christ Followers. Just as organic DNA determines how a body looks and functions, our “communal” DNA, our values, should do the same for us as the Body of Christ. They should both express our values and also “shape” us to be authentic Christ followers who live by them.
I am still “shaping” our values right now into the most readable and understandable form but what they are is pretty clear if how we express them in words isn’t it
Mission … We want to join Jesus in his incarnational mission in our world
Community …. We want to live not as a group of people who attend the same building for events but as the interrelated and interdependent community that is the Body of Christ.
Love … Love is to be the aroma of everything we do
Wholistic Discipleship … We don’t believe in a sacred / secular divide. We believe we are as much the Church when we are apart as when we are together. We believe we are all called to have a vocation which is expressed outside the church.
So I have been thinking about the Bells acrostic which was developed by the Church in Sydney we looked at. I think it is great in many ways but while discussing it with others I think we got the feeling we wanted to develop something that was “uniquely” ours. So here is what I have come up with below. Some of it probably needs some explanation which I’ll attempt to do at some point when we get together.
Right now I am interested in your gut reaction to it?
Remember this is no paper exercise, this is what we would expect of ourselves as those committed to being part of the core of Mosaic. This is the essence of what we would tell people it would mean for them when they ask about becoming a committed part of Mosaic. Without being legalistic about it we’ll be asking each other how we are doing living this lifestyle out. Its challenging, its not easy to do, it will require effort and sacrifice at times, but hey isn’t that what Jesus said being His Disciple would be like?
M … Meet three times a week. Have a meal, coffee etc three times a week with someone inside the community and someone outside of it, and an extra to be expressed either way
O … Orientate your day. Orientate your day around Christ and his Kingdom by beginning each day by saying the Jesus Creed (love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind and soul and your neighbour as yourself)
S … Serve three times a week. An act of serving or blessing, big or small to someone inside the community and someone outside of it, and an extra to be expressed either way
A … Attend. Make it a priority to be part of the Mosaic Missional Communities, Gatherings when they happen.
I …. Interact with culture. By 1. Being part of a group not connected with Christianity or Church on a weekly basis. 2. Attending an event with no church/christian connections monthly. 3. Reading (listening to) a good non Christian book or watching non Christian video / film bimonthly.
C … Connect with God. By 1. Constantly reading the Gospels 2. Reading another book of the Bible 3. Listening to God in contemplative prayer for at least an hour a week, either in one go or broken into segments. 4. Reading (listening to) a good Christian book or watching Christian teaching on video bimonthly.
So what do you think?
Will this shape us to be the community and be the people that we believe God is calling us to do?
Is it realistic?
Is it inspiring?
Is it intimidating?
I really believe this is these practices will mark us out as more than just a group that talks about this stuff and helps us become a movement of people who are living it out.