Visions are born in the soul of a man or woman who is consumed with the tension between what is and what could be. Anyone who is emotionally involved-frustrated, brokenhearted, maybe even angry-about the way things are in the light of the way they believe things could be, is a candidate for a vision. Visions form in the hearts of those who are dissatisfied with the status quo.
Anyway I was thinking about how to start this process. There's so much business to do, things to keep up with and tasks to complete, that we just don't seem to get the time to stop and pray and reflect and think and dream. It's not a criticism, just an observation.
So I thought I would see if I could track down a few things to help nudge the process along by giving us all something to reflect upon. I began looking for something I read years ago that began, "We dream of a church..." It came from a church in Texas I think, and I know I've got it somewhere on paper if not electronically. Sticking the phrase into Google yielded a few interesting results that I thought I'd post here.
First up was Dream UK, a network as far as I can see of Christians in and around Liverpool. What was interesting was their guerrilla worship. You can find out more by going here and here.
Then there was the dream of Hope Community Church. Ten years on it still has an authentic ring about it in terms of the fundamental purposes of the church, any church. Take this for example:
We have a dream of a church where everyone counts, where everyone is appreciated, where everyone is valued, not because of who they are down here, but because of who they are up there.
One could go on multiplying similar sites. The question I'm asking myself is what kind of church do I dream about? And if I have a dream, and I do, then how do I translate that into a vision and then a reality?
Okay, so the church that we will become is not about me and my thoughts and my ideas. Not even our thoughts, ideas and plans, but of course it is about what God is doing, wants to do, invites us to join him in doing. That's the vogue spiritualisation of it all if that's not too provocative. And it's a position with which I have a great deal of sympathy.
I would hate for our dreams to remain just dreams with no practical outworking that changes and transforms lives as God goes about his daily business and we tag along.
Anyway, I should get back to trying to find the things I want to use as the building blocks for our reflections rather than write about it!