Yesterday we wrapped up our 4-week series on margin talking about resolving conflict, so I wanted to do a quick intro into what we’ll be looking at starting this coming Sunday. There is a book that came out last year by a guy named Todd Hunter entitled Christianity Beyond Belief – Following Jesus for the Sake of Others . That name may not mean much to those of you who are relatively new to the Vineyard, but when Liz and I first planted the Ithaca Vineyard, Todd was the National Director of the Association of Vineyard Churches. And then more recently he was the national director of Alpha.
Well, back in the early years of our church plant, back when I could actually be considered young, Todd would gather a bunch of young leaders a few times a year and talk about the church, and what it meant to follow Jesus in this emerging post-modern culture that we find ourselves in. He would bring in guys like Brian McClaren, Dallas Willard, Stanley Grenz, and we’d get to sit and listen to this guys and engage them about church and culture.
I can say without question that God used Todd Hunter, and Dallas Willard really did more to shape my thinking on what church was supposed to be than anyone (The Divine Conspiracy should be required reading for anyone who is a follower of Jesus!)
In going through this book over the next two months, it’ll really be an opportunity to talk about the vision of this church and where God is leading, so I’m really excited about this. We do have a few copies of the book out at the resource center, if you’d like to pick one up next Sunday (or stop by the office this week.) Of course, you can also get them online here…but I hope you’ll pick up a copy and be a part of the discussion.
Although only one of our kinship groups is actually working through the book this semester, many of them will have time to talk about it each week..
Again, we’ll be kicking things off this Sunday @ the Ithaca Vineyard, so I hope you’ll grab a copy, read the first chapter of Christianity Beyond Belief and join us this Sunday!