AND CONFERENCE: Alan Hirsch

About Alan: Alan is the founding Director of Forge Mission Training Network. He is the co-founder of shapevine.com an international forum for engaging with world transforming ideas. He leads Future Travelers, a  learning journey applying missional-incarnational approaches to established churches and is an active  participant in The Tribe of LA, a Jesus community among artists and creatives in Los Angeles.

Known for his innovative approach to mission, Alan is a teacher and key mission strategist for churches across the western world. His popular book The Shaping of Things to Come (with Michael Frost) is widely considered to be a seminal text on mission. Alan’s recent book The Forgotten Ways, has quickly become a key reference for missional thinking, particularly as it relates to movements. His bookReJesus is a radical restatement about the role that Jesus plays in defining missional movements.  Untamed, his latest book (with his wife Debra) is about missional discipleship for a missional church.

My Notes/Thoughts:

  • Our context (church) is becoming increasingly missional and culturally complex.” I agree but struggle constantly to keep things “simple”.  Why do we always make the most simple things complex?
  • We operate on an “idea” of church that runs from Constantine (older).”  Old is not always bad but I think we get stuck in logistics.
  • Our natural tendency when people get saved is to invite them to church (our community) which is attractional to them but they lose the relationships with the people that they once had outside the faith which is a huge problem for spreading the gospel.” Ouch… I’m convicted.
  • Atheism is not growing like people would like us to believe. As a matter of fact, the concept of atheism is dying slowly.” Interesting thought.  I would like to see some data to back this.
  • God, Jesus, and Spirituality are  all looked in a positive light.  However, the church is not.” I wonder if the church gets a bad wrap because of all the hypocrisy that takes place within the church. Isn’t the church supposed to e full of hypocrites? That’s the beauty of the gospel. Maybe it’s due to tolerance…
  • People love Jesus but don’t like the church. This is similar to how people love the apple iphone but hate AT&T.” Good illustration… I’m stealing it.

I think the biggest thing I got out of Alan was that when the unchurched start to become churched, the church looks different than it did in the days of the old.  I think in youth ministry I need to be more open to allowing my students to function instead of forcing them to become like the days of the old.  The church will look how Jesus wants it to look like in the future whether we like it or not.  Therefore, we must understand how to equip our youth to do this but remain grounded in biblical truth.

Interesting and thought provoking…

I got a lot of equipping to do for sure…

-jordan

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