Willzhead asked me “What do the words ’emerging’ and ’emergent’ mean in that context?” (I presume our context here in BLC, KL/PJ, Malaysia)
Here was my quick reply which he said made sense …
I think for me “emerging” is (1) more of a description of the reality
we’re in – i.e. we a young four year old church is “emerging” and we
as a Malaysian church is still “emerging” (thus avoiding a static
arrived image or mindset) (2) I guess building on the first and
somehow tugged in the back of my mind is something you wrote as it
being a “value”
Now for “Emergent” – I think of it now more like a “learning space” or
posture (cf. McLaren’s tree metaphor was helpful here) and applying
that kind of thinking in how we do ministry has great possibilities.
But deep down … my motivation is more “missional” and that’s the
reason why I find “emerging” church values, and “emergent” thinking
“useful” & “helpful” to allow me to explore this dimension more. As
one who serves in a mainline denomination we often maybe “missions”
minded or evangelistic but also have “maintenance” mindset at our core
… thus, reminding ourselves that we have not really “passed”
through the missionary context , even though like in Malaysia all of
the early missionaries or pioneers have left, and we’re tempted to
think we are “established” churches … I think that is not the case.
Does all this make sense?