If you haven’t read the book yet, I’d strongly encourage you to pick it up on amazon.com.

Here are some ideas from the book that have challenged my thinking about Missional Strategies:

“The church is called to share in the mission of God.” p. 15

“Christianity is gradually becoming confined to the cultural margins of society.” p. 26

“It can never be sufficient to constantly construct programmes designed to pull people into secular space, we have to also consider how we might invade secular space.” p. 29

“The populations of the West are open to spirituality, they yearn for an experience of community that the church would like to offer but has forgotten how to model. What we see before us is not a hopeless cause but an open door for mission. We might very reasonably conclude that the Holy Spirit has been busy preparing the way for the church. In such a situation the church is called to reconsider its core life and purpose.” p. 36

“The challenge for the church now is to stop thinking merely about methods to reverse decline but to reconsider the basic purpose and call of the church. To return to mission as the core raison d’être of the church will inevitably mean that the shape of the church will change. Our very failure may well assist us to return to that innovation stage of the life of the church when the church ceases to do church but do mission.” p. 56

“What is at stake here is much more than beefing up the programmes of the church so that congregations can attract more members. The challenge is not just to make the church effective in its own life and witness but to do so in such a way that the core interaction with the culture is changed.” p. 59

“It doesn’t take much imagination to realise that a missionally driven church requires a missional leadership to allow it to function in a healthy manner.” p. 83

“…gathering people to sit and listen to somebody talk about the Bible was not the primary reason for the existence of the church, that more people, happy people, bigger budgets, more programs might not be the main reason for the existence of the church. Success by numbers was seductive.” p 92-93

“…mission is not evaluated first and foremost by the growth of the church either in numbers or in power and influence but primarily by the difference the church engaged in mission makes to the world. … The success of the institution must never be our focus but only the mission impact of what the institution of the church accomplishes.” p. 94

“Once church buildings became the norm, the term ‘church’ and the idea of a church building became interchangeable to the point that for most people in the Western world a church is a building. Indeed to speak about the church as people seems to strike most of the population as a rather strange idea.” p. 97

“The renewal of the church is not for the sake of the church but for the sake of the mission of the church.” p. 102

“Christianity grew in the first few centuries, not through the effectiveness of a professional leadership, but by the patient, consistent witness of ordinary traders, soldiers, civil servants and slaves, who carried the faith with them wherever they travelled in the world. The equipping of the saints to be active participants in the mission of God is a primary principles of mission.” p. 104

“We are bound to ask the question: what would the church look like if it really did live out the grace story of its members? …what would it look like for a church to function in such a way that the goal of church life was not merely to attract more people intro membership and attendance but to produce people that had a profound sense of their personal relationship to God, resource in Christ, and could take that reality into the world with them?” p. 107, 111

“To use the gifts of every member requires a church to structure its life around mission. Once that has happened there is no limit to the number of gifts that can be used.” p. 116

“When God’s people are growing in intimacy with him, we are approaching success. When God’s people are fulfilling his designs for them, especially as it relates to the expansion of his kingdom, then we are approaching success.” p. 156

“Good leaders are not afraid to begin something. While many can be frozen by the fear of failure, good leaders are risk takers.” p. 158

“Our lives are the primary conduit that God uses to tell his story of grace to the world!” p. 168

“Our objective cannot be to ‘grow’ the church, but to live and give the grace found in the gospel in such a way that the environment is created for God to do what only he can do.” p. 172

“Of all things that believers do, this is the most powerful, to bear daily witness through both word and deed to the transforming power of the gospel of Jesus.” p. 174

“The average Western church is organized to survive.” p. 178

“The collapse of a missionary hart in the church sees a corresponding diminution in intentional strategies for reaching all people in a given area. In other words, chutes hope they will grow but fail to take responsibility for taking the gospel to those beyond the church. There is almost the feeling that it is the responsibility of the church to preach the gospel but it is the responsibility of those outside the church to come and hear it.” p. 182

“In truth, the church is not the object of ministry, but is instead the instrument of ministry into the world, which is the true object of ministry of the church.” p. 184

“At its best, Christianity is a lay movement. Wherever Christianity is growing around the world, whether in South America, Asia, Africa or Eastern Europe, this single characteristic is the most significant element in that growth.” p. 195

“The recruitment and training of more leaders than you yourself can ever use is the key to the growth of movements.” p. 201

“The purpose of the church is not to grow itself but to invade secular space with grace lived out in the lives of believers.” p. 207

“Increased members do not necessarily mean increased effectiveness.” p. 208

Today’s Missional Challenge

Consider what God is saying to you as you ponder these quotes above.

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”