Welcome to our corner of the world. For 12 years, we have worked to advance the Kingdom of God in McDowell County, which by all accounts, is very needy. We have learned so much in the process. Our principles have developed, our goals redefined, and our focus has sharpened. Reflecting on the cumulative effect of all of our efforts and of all who have come here to serve can feel disappointing at times. Why isn’t everyone in this County a disciple of Jesus by now? Why aren’t all the problems solved? In order to reflect, refresh, and renew our vision we continuously seek God for direction in order to stay on the narrow path as followers of Christ and as a ministry.
We welcome you to participate in this journey with us. This blog tells our story.
“But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” Mt 6:33
LOL ~ Living Out Loud
Over the years ‘buzz words’ come and go.
Twelve years ago, the word “empower” was all the rage. We need to empower people to do this or to do that. If you were to write a grant for anything you made sure that the word “empowerment” was written all over the place. The idea was great then and still is. The problem is that’s really all that was done. We wrote it, talked it, and we dreamed of it but it did not happen. Another word or concept was “leadership.” We need to train up leaders. We need to empower people to lead (awesome, 2 buzz words) again, incredible idea but little to no lasting impact.
Which brings us to “missional.” It’s not even a word, we invented it because all the cool words were used up. So what does it mean? How is it lived out? Is there a connection with discipleship, church or the great commission? Can we actually be this versus just say we are?
Then there’s another buzzword, “community.”
It’s well accepted that we have a breakdown of the family. How many women are having to raise children without a husband or the father? How many grandparents are having to care for their grandkids? It appears every generation is becoming more dysfunctional than the last. With the breakdown of the family comes the breakdown of the community. As the community becomes more splintered, the family becomes more dysfunctional. The cycle continues. What came first, the breakdown of the family or the community? More importantly, what comes first, the healing of the family or the community? Is there a hunger for healthy families and healthy community? What does Christianity have to offer the family or the community?
Being a mission we get asked what do we do? What is our mission? Most people might describe our mission as home repair, short term mission trips, Parents As Teachers, or youth ministry. The truth is our mission is to fulfill the great commission in our part of the world, in the time God as given us.
That’s the mission, and what we do are programs and strategies to accomplish that mission. When Norma McKinney worked for us she had a saying, “more is caught than taught.” We believe Missional Communities prove that point to be correct. People are starving for relationships. They long for community where people care for and love one another. It is in community that we live out Kingdom values while living out our lives. If living for Jesus is as great as people say it is then living out in front of people hungry for a better life only make sense. People are attracted to real, authentic Christian community because it is where they see a real, authentic Jesus.
We have spent a lot of time doing church and feel that now we must be the church. Piercing the darkness of our culture with the light of the Gospel. AMEN!
“Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Mt 28:19-20