Ready to Explode   Leave a comment

A jack-in-the-box

A jack-in-the-box (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Have you ever been at that point in your life that you sense something is going to happen but you have no idea what it is or when it is going to happen?  It remains me of how when I was a young boy I used to play with my jack-in-the-box.  Now I knew that as I turned that crank and the tinny music played there would come a point that the latch on the top of the box would move and the “jack” inside would come bursting out when the lid was no longer held down.  Well, I am feeling like that same situation is happening in my life and the life of the church.

I think that the church is about to explode.  I don’t know when it is going to happen and I have no idea what that truly means but I am sensing that it something is coming.  About ten years ago, I started engaging in discussions about the status of the church and how the way that we were “doing” church seemed to be becoming less and less effective in reaching people.  More and more writers and contemporary Christian leaders began to add the voices to the conversation.  More and more church gatherings were designed around the “transformation” of the church and new approaches of how to live in community.  Today the conversations are daily and the participants in the conversations have reached high number levels.

With the increased discussions comes an increase in uncertainty.  Many people are very aware that major and significant changes are coming in the lives of believers and the churches that they affiliate with but no one seems able to truly state when the arrival is going to happen and what it will look like when it does.  This creates uncertainty because we ask how we are to live in this time of transition and what steps should be taken.  The old methods and certainties associated with “being the church” are falling away and losing their effectiveness.  Yet no one is clear on what should replace them and when the right time to make replacements might be.  Like the jack-in-the-box, we continue to turn the crank and await what until “jack” jumps out.

Another way to view this change might be like watching the eaglets hatch in the nest.  Many people from throughout the country and definitely throughout Iowa watched with anticipation the Eagle Webcam last spring and this spring wanting to see the new eagles hatch from their eggs.  People would spend hours with the website up on their computers even if they had minimized the window and worked on other tasks at the time.  Much excitement and discussion was generated because of the events of the eagles’ birth.  I believe that is what is happening in the church today.  Many people are watching to see when a new birth of the church will take place.  Much excitement and discussion is being generated.  With the eagles, we had a little knowledge of what to expect.  With the church, we have much less knowledge but as we watch the shell of what we have known the church to be being chipped away, we are excited to see what will emerge.

I sense that something is about to explode.  Not sure what it is or when it will happen but the energy is building.


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