My, how church names have changed! New churches are no longer adopting old standards like First Baptist Church or Second Street Christian Reformed. Oh no, we’ve moved on. We’re cRe-aTIvE now. We’ve progressed!…or have we? Here is a list of actual church names that I shared at Mosaic yesterday that are sure to make you wonder and give you a good laugh to kick off your week. Enjoy! Continue Reading…
Photo by Waymon Mattison Jr
Yesterday, I had a conversation with a good friend who is in a tough situation. He asked me what I thought he should do, and I’d love to extend the question to you.
THE SCENARIO: My good friend is a part of a church plant in a small, academic college town in the Northeast. As a highly gifted worship leader, he has been a part of a number of new churches in the past. And so when a young church planter who felt called by God to plant a church moved into the community, my good friend immediately connected with him and volunteered to help in whatever way he could.
The planter is a good man. Continue Reading…
I recently watched the documentary The Pixar Story. (Confession: I love documentaries, I love Pixar, and I have a man crush on Steve Jobs.) The documentary is fantastic – a must-see for any entrepreneur, church planter, creative or Pixar fan. (FYI, it is currently on Netflix.) In the documentary, there are some real gems about leadership and creativity that come out of their story and the things they learned along the way. Some of those things are directly relatable to serving and leading in the church. Here are a few, enjoy. Continue Reading…
Wow, has it really been a month since my last update?! We have been running so hard for the last month that stopping to blog has about been the last thing on my mind. But considering all that we are seeing God do and the amount of interest we are seeing in this new work already, I am realizing that I really need to start making this more of a priority! Here are just a few highlights on what has been happening in our community as we continue to move forward in planting Mosaic Lincoln.
1. Launch Team
God is already bringing an extraordinary group of like-minded people together. It seems that every week God is connecting us to new people who he has already been in conversation with about this new work, shaping and aligning our hearts with one another before we've even spoken. As a result, our small community is growing. Since the photos above were taken, our launch team has doubled in size to over 30 people – thirty gifted, passionate, missional, authentic, Jesus-worshiping, Lincoln-loving, people-loving people! These are wonderful people and I am so thankful for each of them. Few things excite me more than to think and pray about all that God is preparing to do in and through them!
2. Financial Provision
Planting a life-giving church from scratch in the U.S. takes money. That's why in just the update before last, I was so excited to be able to share about our partnership with ARC and their commitment to match what we fundraise up to thirty thousand dollars. As we prepared to figure out how to go about trying to raise that kind of money, I received word that a leader in our denomination had approached a friend in Kansas City to express his belief in us and to ask him to pray about writing a $30,000 check. The short answer is that this guy (who insists on remaining anonymous and who I will likely never get the opportunity to meet) did pray about it…and then he went home and wrote the check. You think God is expanding our faith during this season?! You think our definition of "impossible" is being rewritten? You think God used this extraordinary gift to affirm us, encourage us, focus us and humble us? You think we are upping our game in what we are willing to pray for and risk in faith? The answer to all of the above is YES! God WILL provide for what He has called you to, even if you can't see it yet!
3. An Angel who also Happens to be a CPA
God has gifted me to do a few things, but handling finances and keeping books in a way that won't shipwreck the church or send me to jail is NOT one of them. For this reason, many wise friends suggested that I get all of that stuff out of my hands as soon as possible and recommended I talk to a mutual friend. Person after person kept telling me to connect with her (and you'd think I'd get the hint) but I kept putting it off; until one day I happen to run into this person at a coffeeshop. I told her my dilema and we decided to grab coffee the next week. When we got together, she informed me that she had already decided that she wanted to get us all setup and do our books for free. Being that we don't have money to hire it out and I don't want to go to jail, I was ecstatic! I feel like I have a new story like this almost every week!
4. Associate Pastor
Just a couple weeks ago we received word that after many months of praying about it, my good friend,
Kevin Mattison, and his family are going to be moving to Lincoln from Pennsylvania to join us in planting Mosaic Lincoln. Kevin brings a wide range of skills to the table and is a huge addition to the team. He is a kindred spirit, a good man, an effective leader, a sharp mind, and a person of thoughtful and compassionate action. Kevin will be serving as an associate pastor, helping to champion our ongoing discipleship process through small groups and mentoring, as well as serving on the teaching and creative teams, and anything else that needs to be done. (In reality, his unofficial title is "Minister of GCD.") Kevin is a godsend!
As we continue to move forward, God continues leading and providing for us step by step. There are many more things to share of course, but I am going to cut myself off. I will post again very soon (I promise!) on some very exciting things we have coming up this month and next. If you have any questions regarding what we are doing or if you are interested in potentially being a part of Mosaic Lincoln, be sure to check out mosaiclincoln.com and please don't hesitate to drop me a line.
Hello friends! Right now we are working on the logo for Mosaic Lincoln and we would love to know which designs you like best! We're looking for any and all feedback, so submit your vote and spread the word!
CLICK HERE for a larger view of the designs at the top of our list so far. Check them out & submit your Top 2 votes over on the left. Thanks in advance for your role in helping us launch a new movement in Lincoln, NE!
I am currently reading David Kinnaman's UnChristian for one of my classes and really enjoying it. I know most of us probably didn't need a book to tell us how poorly the Christian community is perceived by the wider culture (and often rightfully so, in my personal opinion), but I've been pleasantly surprised and personally challenged. That's not to mention that it has my mind spinning about our ecclesiology – taking all of this information into account, how should the church respond? For those of us who are passionate about seeing new churches started (and for those brave souls who are passionate about overhauling existing churches), how do we effectively minister in a post-Christian culture where we are increasingly perceived with skepticism and distrust? The book is causing me to wrestle and that's a good thing.
Here is something that I just read and had to share. "When asked to describe what Christianity is like, outsiders offered these provocative analogies:
Hey friends, I wanted to make you aware of a couple of free resources from Mosaic. The first is a brand new resource we are using in our communities called "Breathe." Breathe is a very simple and very practical response to the need we saw to help people get into the scriptures and to begin to respond to it with their lives. The booklet consists of 25 favorite passages of Mosaic leaders – ones they have found to be transformational in their own lives.
My good friend Steve Saccone released his first book just a couple weeks ago: Relational Intelligence: How Leaders Can Expand Their Influence Through a New Way of Being Smart. He has some great things to say in this book and although I'm not quite all the way through it yet, I'd definitely recommend it for anyone who desires to grow in their capacity to lead others.
Mosaic will be doing a relational intelligence series this next month based on Steve's book. If you're looking for a good laugh, check out this video created by some of the protege crew and friends. Ever seen the Dos Equis commercials about "the most interesting man?" Well, my friends, I introduce you to the "The Most Relational Man in the world."
I saw an interview with Mark Driscoll a while back in which he predicted that over the next decade denominations will be replaced by informal networks, such as his Acts 29. I remember thinking, "Wow, that is a rather extreme conclusion to come to." But now years later, here I am preparing to plant a church and wrestling with the question, Is there any good reason to align with a denomination?
Now I'll admit that I've sort of been around the block when it comes to denominations. My family roots are Methodist, most of my childhood was spent in a rural Baptist General Conference church, middle school, high school and college were spent in three different EFCA churches across two states, and today I find myself at a (albeit rather unorthodox) Southern Baptist Conference church on the west coast.
I like to think those 'cross-cultural' experiences have made me more balanced. But they have also left me without connection or obligation to any one denomination. So my question is: In a time when denominations are by-and-large decreasing in membership and increasingly viewed with skepticism by non-believers, are there any good reasons for aligning with a denomination rather than simply partnering with a network? (That is not a rhetorical question. I am really wondering.)