Monday, April 18, 2005

Impacted church...

We never noticed it, tucked away at the of Eryn's mouth an impacted tooth. The dentist noticed it and pointed its existence to us and made sure we were aware it needed attention on the cleaning front. So every day we give this unfortunate tooth some encouragement by giving it a good brush.

"An impacted tooth is when a tooth fails to fully emerge through the gums."

Failure to fully emerge? There is a growing tension within me. I love the emerging church thing, the creativity, fluidity its confluence of thought and ideas but I need more.

I am desperate to read of an emerging church that isn't so much about multiple TV's, video loops, Moby and U2. I am desperate to read of an emerging church that isn't so much about slick html, book contacts and wifi conferencing. I am desperate to read of an emerging church that isn't so much about cosy community where we sit around sharing stories adding our colours to the tapestry that is a gospel narrative.

Listen - I take all of it and love it but I need more. It's not enough for me. I'm tired of the latest.

I am desperate to read of an emerging church that stands up and says the way we live is about local justice in our community, the way we live is about presenting true hope and liberty, the way we live about is about sharing true compassion and mercy. I am desperate to read of an emerging church that is bedded in mission that is beyond that of being attractional eye candy. That is open to the whosoever of its community to drop by and feel safe and wanted.

Until the emerging church fully embraces mission beyond that which is merely worship experience I've a feeling that it will remain more impacted than emerged. The trouble with an impacted tooth - it lacks a biting edge.


Rob said...

I love this post and you have got me thinking.

So I Go said...

we must be tracking the same this week.. i posted something similar to this as well.

i like how you put this.. very well said! thanks, as always for for stirring it up a bit.

Kelly said...

AMEN AMEN!! I seem to be learning more and more that people could care less how we "do church." The cries for relevance and conversational preaching,is that what speaks to people's hearts?

You stated your point very well.

Gordon said...

Thanks for commenting everyone! I'm concerned that sometimes I appear critical of the emerging scene - I don't intend to be I just have inchoate urge that there must be more to it all!

ron said...

Hi Gordon, I share in your concern but i wonder if alot of what you describe isn't in the " bigger " emerging churches. I think there are alot of smaller communities flying under the radar of detection, beacuse there smaller and low tech. But are more active when it comes to social justice in the community and even globally.
I think we might be surprised, that many small communities can have a greater impact than a large community with all the bells and whistles.

Gordon said...

Thanks Ron - I suspect you could be right. I thought about this a little while ago Lost Tribes of Emergent... (

I'm sure they are there but hidden or as you say flying under the radar. But the point for me remains that emerging dialogue remains by and large pre-occupied with itself.

I feel a change in focus will be needed if emerging church isn't to remain a ecclesiastical blip in the history of the church!