Making decisions in a Summit Fellowship (read, small-group or simple church) can be challenging. When everybody has an opinion, the road is bumpy.
A few years ago when I had the role of pastor in a traditional congregation, one of my frustrations was the reluctance of members to step out in ministry or service. The culture of the church was that initiatives were to always come from “the elders.” The idea that an individual in the congregation could act independently was unheard of. The one time I encouraged someone to go ahead with something, I wound up irritating the head of one of the departments of the church—I violated a territorial boundary. Frustrating. The problem was that in my life among house churches I had gotten used to functioning in an environment without a formal hierarchy.
In My Opinion…
The Summit Fellowships describe the relationship among the groups as, “functionally autonomous, but voluntarily interdependent.” That means that we regard each group as its own congregation. It is not Continue reading Decision Making at the Summit
It’s one of the common questions we house-churchers get asked: So whadaya do with the kids?
It’s a great question with no easy answers. All kids are different. All families are different. All house churches are different.
We’re going to try to post suggestions and ideas for the kids here on the Summithome site (there’s a link on right sidebar).
69th Street Project
Right now, the folks at the 69th Street Summit Fellowship are working on adapting the Sonship Study approach to kids.
Sonship, as you may know, is an approach to getting together that encourages everyone to “listen” to the direction of the Spirit through the scriptures (a link is on the menu above). It is not a curriculum, per se. It is a template to give direction for listening to the Spirit and to help disciples to step into their proper relationship as sons and daughters of the Lord.
69th Street is hoping to be able to make what they are learning available to other fellowships after they have have gone through it themselves. One thing, though. Sonship by its nature, is to be passed on relationally. It isn’t dispensed like Sunday school materials. That means if fellowships are to use it, the adults should have used the Sonship Study in their gatherings.
I’ve been watching with interest the developments around same-sex marriage. I believe there are implications for the church as the majority of Americans know and practice it. The financial realities of doing location-based church may become very difficult in the days ahead.
Consider this: if our friends and neighbors were to find themselves unable to “go to church” as they always have, would they know how to find a community of faith without it? Would they know how to practice the life of the church without a building and paid staff?
Now, consider this: Are you ready to host your friends in your home? Are you willing to teach others how to be what I call “a church of the heart?” In other words, are you ready to invite others into a simple church, a “summit” fellowship?
As the landscape of American Christianity starts to shift, we need to be prepared to share what we have learned in our simple church experience. “…Who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this? (Esther 4:14)”
I won’t go into detail now, but might I suggest you take a look at the Time magazine piece at this link. You may find it interesting.