Wednesday, September 12

Influences, Part II

Kickin' off Wednesday morning with another segment of Influences!

Bill Hybels has been THE BIGGEST INFLUENCE on me in ministry... period. I've said this before... Bill is, to me, the greatest Christian leader from the 90's on! You don't have to like that, of course, but this is my blog... and my opinion. :-) Seriously, though... he was THE human vehicle used by the Holy Spirit to push me toward what I'm doing today.

It was while reading his book Rediscovering Church over 10 years ago that my heart began to explode with visions of a new way of "doing" church. The freedom in worship, the emphsis on relevance and reaching the unchurched, the redemption of the arts, the importance of filling ministry roles according to giftedness... all these things seemed like no-brainers to me, but I'd never seen them done... not in church! Then, several years later, I began to regularly attend the Willowcreek Leadership Summit, and hear Bill cast vision for the Church being "the hope of the world"... and how "there's nothing that comes close to the local church, when it is functioning right."

I had been captured - never to be the same again.

Today, I'm still a willing prisoner of God's vision through Bill Hybels of what the church can be. There are many more young visionaries who've come on the scene, who pretty much have received the baton from Bill and have run full-force foward... and I learn alot from them. I thank God for their being able to put into "new wineskins" what Bill and the Willow team started many years ago. They're also helping me to shape and clarify what God has called me to do through Mosaic.

But if it hadn't been for one young Dutch kid in the Chicagoland area in the early-70's, who thought that maybe... just maybe... what he was doing in youth ministry could be expanded to reach and transform adults, as well... many of us church leaders wouldn't be doing what we're doing... the way we do it.

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