I’ve had a vision to start a church for a little while, a vision which I share with my Brother-in-Law. As of right now, we call it Open-Mic Church.
The format is simple:
Meetings revolve around a timed, open-mic sharing time (think TED talk), loosely facilitated by dedicated Elders. No paid staff and no owned building… no emo worship band.
A weekly topic will be given in advance for the Body to meditate, pray, and live over. Sign-ups will then be first-come, first-serve with a two-week-in-a-row speaking limit (to encourage different voices). Members can fill their time with teaching, singing, Q & A, performance, liturgy, whatever.
To encourage commitment and community, only members can participate, though participation isn’t required and anyone can come.
Open-Mic Church—not a replacement of the current system, but an alternative, a bridge—will be a place for change; a place for people to learn, argue, and interact with one another; a place where the average church goer can impact more than just a pew cushion.
That’s the vision in a nutshell.
I had church today. Over coffee, with a friend, it was great. We met at a cafe and spoke about Jesus. We encouraged one another, challenged each other.
Struggles were confessed and visions were deciphered.
Although I was tired, grumpy, and a little hungover—the “Highlife” is not all it’s cracked up to be—today’s meeting was just amazing.
My friend spoke some truth that woke me up.
With this church thing, I get to the point of giving up—thinking Open-Mic will never happen, wondering if it even needs to. Then, I run into someone, like my friend, who reminds me that movement starts with action, not words.
I talk with other believers who lack an identity or connection in the modern church, and like me, thirst for it in a new and vibrant way. They remind me that the vision isn’t mine alone. That I’m just a small part of the puzzle, shaped uniquely for the Kingdom of God.
Moving For Ward
I’m fairly certain my vision of Church wont change the world. I don’t think it needs to. There’s a lie going around, telling people my age that if your faith doesn’t impact millions, then it’s not worth having or sharing.
I’d disagree. I’d say faith is best when it’s personal.
Relationships are more important than status. Find two or three people and pour yourself into them, and them to you. Small and personal grassroots ministries, I believe, are a lost art and the only way back to Acts 2.
I’d love to see more of that. Let’s get back there.
If 20 or 30 people can find a home, can find a Body, at Open-Mic Church (or whatever it will be called), then that’ll be fine. Maybe, 20 or 30, or 2 or 3, or one friend at a cafe, is all who I’m called to impact.
I guess we’ll see.