Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Focus the Message, Multiply the Impact

The average Christian is educated
at least three years beyond their obedience.

I'm continuing my version of Speed Reading Week: a book a day from authors that I have had the privilege of hearing speak in person in the last year, and/or have had a conversation with about their work. Today, it's Dave Ferguson and "The Big Idea" from Community Christian Church in Naperville IL - and many other sites. One of the leading proponents of the multi-site church concept, Ferguson and CCC begin with a simple premise:

More Information = Less Clarity
More Information = Less Action

Instead, they submit that The Big Idea = More Clarity and Action. Here is a brief outline of the major points of "The Big Idea".

  • The Big Idea = Directional Alignment
  • TBI moves the whole family in the same direction
  • TBI moves all small groups (circle groups) in the same direction
  • TBI moves all ministries in the same direction
  • TBI moves all campuses and sites in the same direction
  • TBI moves the whole network in the same direction

Big Idea = Speedy Obedience
The measure of maturity is determined by the speed of obedience
Transformation: when a person hears God and responds with swift obedience

Paradox: The Big Idea is Less AND More

  • Energy: Less Effort AND Better Stuff
  • Innovation: New Ideas AND Always Good Ideas
  • Target Generations: Boomers, Busters AND Mosaics
  • Curriculum: Targeted AND Reproducible
  • Creativity: Planned AND Spontaneous
  • Christ Followers: More AND More Maturing

Advance Planning:
Gives Freedom to Think Creatively
Gives Freedom to Suspend Skepticism
Gives Freedom to Postpone Decisions

The Secrets Implicit in The Big Idea

  • Collaboration – Our ideas are always better than your idea. So get over it.
  • Humility – Let me introduce you to the pastor’s helper.
  • Trust – I know you won’t let us down; we’re banking on it.
  • Fun – If you want this much commitment, it had better be fun.
  • Competition – This week has to be better than last week.
  • Yes – Just when you’re about to say, “Why?” think, “Why not?”

Jesus’ Really Big Idea
Challenge 1: Take Bold Risks
Challenge 2: Be Spirit-led
Challenge 3: Continually Reproduce

Four Developmental Stages to Accomplishing the Big Idea
Phase 1: A Really Big Idea Church
Phase 2: A Reproducing Church
Phase 3: A Network Church
Phase 4: A Movement Church

A closing quote from Ferguson sums it up pretty well:

I am a Christ follower. I follow Jesus step by step as his Spirit moves me in His community called the church. When Jesus steps, I follow. When Jesus speeds up, I increase my pace. When Jesus slows down, I slow down too. The direction, the speed, and the ultimate destination of my life are determined by keeping in step with Jesus’ Spirit. Simple. Clear. Not easy!

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