Hello, everyone. This blog has moved to JOHNVOELZ.COM!

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Best Practices Rag

David and I are working on a "Best Practices" rag/short magazine that we will make available to those interested in conversations about incarnation and how things play out at the Winds. David is doing all the layout, our staff has contributed, David and I are both weighing in heavily to the content and I just finished the intro that sets it up. Stay tuned for more. To give you an idea of the content and what to expect, here's the intro:

We’re not gonna lie to you. We believe Westwinds is something pretty special. An anomaly in the greatest sense of the word. Something incongruent with most of our collective church experiences.

The story of “how” it all came to be is one of intrigue, suspense, scandal, bewilderment, blessing, and some sort of spiritual ecstasy. Some would say that not too many years ago the planets aligned and something magical descended upon Jackson, MI. Some say it’s good breeding. Others have told fanciful tales of unicorns and wildebeests.

The legends and oral traditions are many that explain why Westwinds often finds itself on the frontline of creative churches and often talked about in the mainstream media as well as the blogosphere.

Honestly, all fun aside, it’s been a long road of fostering a community that values imagination, permission, authenticity, and community. It’s been a repetitive dialogue wherein we invite one another to collectively craft ways to make church not suck for our friends. It’s not an attempt at being “relevant” which is usually ghettoized to mean “look and speak cool.” It’s about incarnation and a particular offense to mediocrity.

More than that, it’s a deep rooted belief that God has called us to act upon the stuff in our heads. The thirst for the sacred, the mysteries of God, the magic of the sacraments, the otherworldliness of corporate worship, the tears spent on broken people—they call us to act. We act by creating. By making stuff. We incarnate our thoughts into visual art and music and poetry and film. Projects, proposals and petitions. Moments and movements.

This rag is not propagandist—there’s no agenda (other than the Jesus agenda). It is not our attempt at false humility (eyes closed, hands raised, “it’s not about us”). We believe God has allowed us to experience the greatest season of ministry ever—one pregnant with expectation that we haven’t even seen our best days yet. God has called a guy from California, a west-coast Canadian, some native born Midwesterners, a Mexican missionary, and a rag tag collection of people from all walks of life and Christian traditions to this place in southern Michigan—the home of Motown, Ted Nugent, Madonna, Eminem and Kid Rock for this time in history.

We are proud. We are excited. We want to share this stuff with you. Not so you can become like us (as if we have a corner on the market) but so that, maybe, by some chance, if you find yourself in a season of worship ruts and/or missional mediocrity you might be inspired. Or, if you find yourself saying, “Yes! Yes! That’s how I think!” you will know you have a friend.

God is worth it. People are worth it. Your specific people are worth it.

blog comments powered by Disqus