on monday night we launched our causemology portal at westwinds, which is a spiritual formation initiative for our church.
we're trying to get everyone more comprehensively engaged with the movement of the spirit of god in their regular lives
in their souls
in their relationships
in their church
and in their world
it was a huge success!
over 100 additional people than what we first anticipated showed up
and the energy in the room was easy to feel and be invigorated by
we're praying desperately that god would teach us his priorities, his path, his affections, and overflow us with his love - and we're aware that he doesn't "need" something like causemology to help make that happen; but, beginning causemology is a very convenient way for us to more finely tune our hearing to him.
it comes around the same time as a massive redux of our kids ministry at westwinds
wherein lori tate and jvo have worked tremendously hard with their teams to create experiential learning environments where our kids can see/touch/play with the stories from scripture. it's a fantastic model that authenticates differing learning styles and multiple intelligences, while still prioritizing the story of god and the centrality of prayer.
while we're working hard doing our damnest to effectively disciple our church and our children [and be discipled ourselves], there are those who feel qualified to offer critique about our initiatives from their armchairs [particularly christian leaders and pastors not employed by ww].
i find this incredibly difficult.
i have devoted my short life to helping people more meaningfully engage jesus christ.
i want everyone - myself most especially - to know him better.
having experienced passionate moments of overwhelming grace and love
i can think of nothing better than endeavoring to honor god with my efforts and my ambitions, my thinking and speaking and blogging
and i try very hard not to publicly criticize people of other ilks, methodologies, denominations, or persuasions [case in point: have you, reader, even seen anything on guerillahost that names/questions/attacks any other ministry or leader by name...ever? have you ever seen or heard me speak about my reservations about what anyone else is doing in ministry - either locally or internationally?]
i feel like it is very easy to criticize
it is very easy to undercut
to poke holes
because everything everyone ever does is flawed
and cannot possibly bear the scrutiny of detached observation from a critical spirit
but it seems that my godly ambitions are sometimes the target of the same sins i furiously try to avoid committing
and sometimes i am criticized
from a distance
by those who feel that - since every approach is flawed - we ought not to bother trying; or, we ought not to waste our time trying to be more biblically honest or reflective of real life
so, in response [and partly in therapy]
i say 4 things:
1. just because something is imperfect doesn't mean it isn't helpful
2. just because i'm imperfect doesn't mean i'm impervious to backhanded comments or subversive actions
3. just because causemology and/or kids redux doesn't look like something another church would try or something another pastor would create doesn't mean they aren't exactly what westwinds needs right now [because they are EXACTLY what we need - we need to understand how we are formed spiritually and to be missionally engaged in our world; and we need to pay attention to the spiritual lives of our children]
4. just because i'm writing this post, doesn't mean i'm bitter or angry - it just means that, sometimes, you want to let those whose ignorance harms you know about it