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Today I watched a TED video on adaptability.  The speaker discussed a meeting between John Antioco, the CEO of Blockbuster, and Reed Hastings, the CEO of Netflix.  Hastings wanted to create a partnership to manage Antioco’s online business.  Antioco wasn’t interested because Blockbuster was making millions through their stores.  Now that Blockbuster is bankrupt and gone, I wonder if Antioco even remembers that meeting?

What does this have to do with prayer or faith?  How many of our faith communities are stuck with a mindset similar to Antioco’s?  We are so focused on managing our current membership that we can’t even contemplate the possibilities of meeting our new neighbors, neighbors who may not look like us or worship like us.  Their needs might be fairly different too as their kids struggle in school because they lack language or other foundation skills.

This doesn’t even touch on the fact that many churches and faith communities also completely ignore our online neighbors.  When I talk to people at church about PrayPower, many of them trout. That’s my son’s cheeky term for staring glassy-eyed and mouth agape.  An online community?  How can that be?

Christ was a rebel.  He ate with tax collectors.  Women were leaders.  And he took the word of God beyond the traditional community.

Thank you for being part of the PrayPower online Faith community!

–SueBE

golden circleI love it when someone challenges me.  Not the snotty kind when someone is rude and it’s all I can do to keep my big mouth shut.  Yeah, I fail at that way too often.

No, I like it when someone introduces me to a new idea that just won’t leave me be.  That’s what Pastor Sean did with last week’s sermon.  In it he mentioned Simon Sinek and how his Golden Circle concept applies to the modern church.

Sinek’s concept is fairly simple. He draws three concentric circles.  The innermost is “why,” next is “how,” and last but not least is “what.”  They stand for “what we do,” “how we do it,” and “why we do it.” Sinek applies his concepts to business.  Businesses that keep why at the center are successful because that is what they communicate – we are innovators, we seek to inspire, etc.

Businesses that don’t focus on why, tend to focus on what. “We make computers. Buy one.”  “We have great gyms.  Join today.”  These approaches are much less successful because they are just trying to sell us some “thing.” They are focused on this thing.  We’ve seen things before.  Meh.

Gods lovePastor Sean took Sinek’s concept and applied it to the Church today.  Many congregations focus on the “what.” In this case it stands for “what we are doing because we are a Godly Church.” We have worship and you should come.  We feed the hungry and you should give. Attend our sausage supper. Come to our concert/service/sale.

Instead our focus should be on the why.  Why do we do what we do?  What core belief is at the center of it all? Look at most church calendars and you might think the central belief is business because we all have a lot going on but that’s not supposed to be the center.  What is? God’s Love. God’s Light. G-O-D.

Once we are focused on the Why (God’s Love), we can think about the How.  He sent us his Son. Why? Because he loves us. He has given us Talents. Why? Because he loves us and we are a part of Him.  He has sent us out. Why? Because he wants us to share this love with others because we aren’t the only ones that he loves.

Once we have focused on the Why (God’s Love) and the How (Christ, talents, sharing), then we get to the what. We should feed and clothe. We should shelter and heal. We should teach and inspired.

But most of all – we should Love.  Why?  Because His Love is at the center of it all.

–SueBE

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