Friday, November 20, 2009

kingdom living as grassroots business realities

active intent….
I believe that we are created to live the Kingdom of God in our world, not apart from but within society. I am a representative of God’s Kingdom here on earth. I live and speak for God’s rule as an attractive member of the Kingdom, not against the world but for God’s Kingdom, His Good news in Jesus transforming the world.

From the blog of Phil, one of God’s gifts at Opawa. Last year, I invited Phil, and a number of others, to keep a blog as a spiritual practice, a way of being intentional about attending to God’s Kingdom flutters (and further here). It meant that as I preached on the Kingdom during the month, ordinary folk in our church were modelling what this might look like. So it looks like Phil has continued to blog. What’s more, it’s become a fantastic set of grassroots, mission reflections. Not from a pastor, but a businessperson.

There is more to this story. Earlier this year I asked Phil and his wife, Bronwyn, to lead one (of three) mission collectives, living. Four times a year, collectives are meant to gather us around God’s mission – to discuss, resource , pray. For us at Opawa, mission has taken concrete shape in

  • living, faith in our workplaces and among our neighbours
  • loving, the local streets around us
  • creating, the citywide creative capacity of the Christmas Journey and Pentecost.

It’s been an experiment, simply trying to build community and capacity around the green shoots that seem to be Opawa’s season at the moment.

So the blog now contains some of Phil’s reflections on this challenge – what living faith sharing looks like. Again, it is fantastic – grassroots, everyday, outside church walls. Go Phil. Go mission reality beyond Sunday, outside sacred/scared walls.

(By the way, Opawa’s mission collectives are meeting again next weekend, as follows:
Friday, 7:30 pm, November 27, 303 Colombo St
Saturday, 7:45 pm, November 28, Latimer Square
Sunday, November 29, 12:30 pm.)

Posted by steve at 04:25 PM

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

does forgiveness have legs?

I sat with a workplace group today. I had been asked to spend two hours addressing the topic of Managing conflict positively, and to cover negotiation, mediation. We got to the topic of forgiveness and the question was asked. “Does forgiveness have a place in the workplace?” Great question. We bounced it around the group for a while. Some said yes, others no.

Then I went fishing. I asked them if they had ever seen forgiveness in their workplaces. (If they had, I was then going to ask if it had a positive or negative effect on the workplace culture, hoping that it was positive and so might address the original question – “Does forgiveness have a place in the workplace?”).

Silence.

No one could think of an example.

It was a sad silence and I came home pondering the “alleged” Christian Easter message, that God in Christ forgives and reconciles, wondering if any of these people worked alongside Christians, wondering what it will take to give the forgiveness message legs, into our workplaces.

Posted by steve at 06:34 PM

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

how do you sustain a workplace spirituality

On Sunday, I preached on the Bible as a resource for our workplace. I looked at Esther as beauty queen, Nehemiah as urban developer and Lydia as a business women. All were found in hard ethical places and yet sustained a missional spirituality. I suggested the church should be encouraging our young people to be ministers of the gospel in government and politics and business. Halfway through my sermon I thought; “Steve, it would have been really useful and practical if you had some practical tips on how to sustain a workplace spirituality.” But by then it was too late.

So I am on a mission this week to collect resources that would help sustain a workplace spirituality. Here’s my start. What else do you know of?

(more…)

Posted by steve at 06:22 PM