A group of church leaders convened to consider a literacy initiative in their city . During the discussion, one of the youth pastor expressed his reservations with the project. “I just don’t think it’s the church’s job to teach kids to read.”
What he forgot is that Sunday school was originally a literacy campaign for kids on the streets of London. Many of the earliest colleges on American soil-including Harvard, Yale, and Princeton were church-sponsored centers of higher education. But more to the point of, this young man’s perspective illustrates the need for the church to understand it’s Kingdom mandate.
Ever since Luther tacked his ninety-five theses on the church doors, the church has been consumed with “proper doctrine.” Denominations have conferences and debates over who is authorized to do what in a church setting; what spiritual gifts are actually from the spirit; how someone gains entrance into the church and remains a good member; how do we count butts in the seat and eyes on the screens; the list goes on and on.
Thousands of denominations have developed over the past several years, each distinguishing their particular recipe for church.
A Kingdom-centered church focuses on how to be the church in the world. A Kingdom centered church asks, “What bridge do we need to build in order to transport broken people to a grace filled savior?” Kingdom-centered churches are not obsessed with how or where they worship or who is authorized to do what in church gatherings. They are obsessed with the needs to others.
We are called to be a Kingdom-centered church. A church on mission to lead people to a growing relationship with Jesus. A church who’s vision is to be a church for people who don’t like church. We didn’t create that vision. We adopted it out of necessity. To differentiate ourselves from churches who are no longer Kingdom-centered.
We exist for the dark horses, the broken toys, the prodigal sons, and the jezebels.