It is so easy to slam the church and Christian culture. But the challenge is changing it. One of the real treasures that arrived on bookshelves this past year is Culture Making, by Andy Crouch. Weighing in on the dynamics with culture, he writes, “You can’t merely repudiate culture. If you are serious about changing culture, you must remake it.” I found myself meditating on what that might look like in the mission realm.
Arriving at nothing less than a complete overhaul, we must remake how we think of who we are, what we are here to do, and how we go about doing it. Methodology matters more than ever today, because it connects directly to who we are and how we are perceived. In simpler terms, how we go about bringing the gospel to the world communicates who we are to the world. The old school mentality of gospel sharing didn’t care of the residual affects of our messaging. We’d say, “Just proclaim it and leave the results to God;” but that day is over!
How we go about sharing the gospel is highly noted by people everywhere: from the neighborhoods to the nations. The way we embody and share the message moves people one way or the other on a spiritual receptivity line. That, in of itself, should cause us to reconsider the “telling paradigm” assumptions, which have pervasively shaped the church and the way our culture perceives us. If we can redefine our messaging manner, we will reshape the church culture, and also redefine how the culture perceives us.
That will eventually build a much stronger bridge for gospel impact. If you are interested in seeing what this might look like with high degrees of specificity, pick up my newly released book, Soul Whisperer!