A Church is a Going Place, and A Going Place Needs Going Leaders. I'm going to go in about five different directions with this ... so hang on. *I think there is some leadership confusion in the churches of Christ today. Elders in various churches run the range from Domineering Tyrants to Laissez Faire hands-off counselors. Preachers are trying to function as Pastors without the authority to do so. Some elders wnat the preacher to be the pastor, while others do not want him to exercise any leadership at all. *There is a backlog of 50 things we've all tried to do to grow the church, but after the failure / near failure of most of them we have no more rabbits to pull out of our hats. The preachers and elders are looking at each other shrugging their shoulders, not sure what to do now. Or else they decide to have a gospel meeting. *The one thing no one is willing to do is engage the community. We will fill 4 tables full of food at at pot-luck dinner. We will fold bulletins and we will donate can drinks to church events. We will give a little extra for a big event. We will welcome visitors who venture into our sanctuary. We are willing to tweak our services toward the contemporary elements. But we will not encounter the unsaved on his own turf. He must come to us. *People follow their leaders. Churches often develop personalities that match their preachers over time (I just heard my blog readers shudder all at once... it was a cosmic shift in the force). A leader who is a going leader can get other people going. A leader who will not go cannot talk a follower into going. *Leaders are people. They are often people who have grown up in the very church that is / isn't a going church. It is hard for them to become something else. *Leaders are overwhelmed. They feel pressed in and covered up with administrative trivia, trying to keep all the plates spinning, assuming the workload of ten Christians. They come to view leadership as decision-making, rather than disciple-making. Many of the statements above are a bit tilted, and somewhat unfair generalizations. But if the church is a going place that needs going leaders, how shall we go? How do we escape the endless routines and time-traps we have set for ourselves? How do we break out of the order and predictability (which we can worship) and fall into the chaos of the world. Maybe we need to ask ourselves if we even want to. And I'm not talking about adding something else to our already frantic schedule ... I'm talking about a shift in perception of who we are in the Kingdom. My mind is swimming in this pool for a bit ... I feel sure I'll have more to say on the matter.