“Signs of Vitality” Blog Series Summary

Over the last few weeks, our team has shared with you several signs and examples of vitality we’re seeing in ministry contexts nationwide. With such a diverse network (approximately 1600 pastors, 24 denominations, a majority people of color), it’s a joy to witness surprising movements of the Spirit as well as common threads of what God is doing in such vastly different contexts.

What’s Your Downline?

“As our culture has become more volatile and ideologically entrenched, a growing number of ministry leaders are learning to major in the majors, de-emphasize finer points of doctrine or ideological tendencies, compromise for the sake of keeping the main thing the main thing, collaborate for the greater good, and dig deeper wells rather than constructing more fences.  They’re finding and holding onto the downline.” – Adam Borneman


A Glimpse of God’s Glory

“When we approach the work of pastoring, it is important that we admit some audacity in the entire endeavor.  As we are compelled by the Spirit and through our own encounter with the transforming power of the Gospel through Jesus Christ, we are inclined to share this experience with others through both declaration and demonstration.  We endeavor to be disciple makers.  This is our calling, or so we think.  We dare to inspire followers of Jesus who will be faithful in words, deeds, truth, and in love.” – Adam Mixon


The Divine Divide

“There’s too much division in our world and Christians are as guilty as any other “tribe,” or “culture,” or “country,” which thinks we are the best, the only, the number one. The Savior that we follow has taught us to come into the world humbly (like a baby in a manger) and serve with grace (like one who loved His enemies) and hold onto hope (like one who rose again), knowing that it is God who has the power to unite us in love, even in our greatest divisions.”  – Amy Valdez Barker


A Glimmer of Hope

“Ironically, here in this mess of trying to answer the hard questions … is where I find the most astonishing glimmer of hope. I find a hope that refutes the evil of hatred that turns one neighbor against another, that turns churches inside out, and reduces the Gospel to a political tool. It is this wrestling in hard times, with hard questions, and even harder answers that is grounding me in a fiercely resistant hopefulness rooted in my faith in God’s promises to never leave or forsake us.”  – Jennifer Watley Maxell


Urgency and Opportunity

“This is an urgent time.  And it is issuing an urgent call to every church.  Godin puts it well:  we are either drowning or we are a lifeguard.  For churches, it is time to take seriously the opportunity to be lifeguards for a drowning world.  It is astonishing what is possible with the Holy Spirit of God guiding us.  Thriving awaits all our faith communities that understand this calling.” – Mark Ramsey

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