Intentional Displacement

I think they call it intentional displacement.  Seems like I read about this somewhere recently.  Getting out of your comfortable life rut, and displacing yourself into a circumstance where something is bound to happen is the goal.  We did it last night, and we’ll do it again tonight.

Our annual midnight breakfast was last night.  At 12:20 a.m. the Scott family was ordering from a Denny’s menu.  We’ve always had so much fun with these.  Last night was no exception as we laughed, ate, took a photo of our waiter whom we swore was Ralph Macchio, and made lasting memories.  We intentionally displaced our dragging bodies from our beds to Denny’s, and there was life to grasp.  There’s a latent story waiting to happen in us all.  A little movement, a little displacement, a little intentional discomfort and voila, you find yourself smack dab in the middle of some audacious new chapter.

Tonight we’re swimming in the ocean at night… in the dark… at around 11 p.m.  I’m calling it, “Face Your Fears.”  For some reason few stick their toes in the ocean when it’s dark, but those same waters and sharks are up to our necks when the sun is out.  Go figure.  My BRAVE family members will be intentionally displacing themselves again, and I’m betting something is gonna happen.

Blaise Pascal wrote: “Our nature lies in movement, complete calm is death.”

Today I blew through the second third of  Hirsch & Ferguson’s “On The Verge.”  The authors write: “A church of a thousand disciples has a thousand potential churches contained in itself.   There is dormant potential in all of God’s people.”

In order for CCC to move missions from a departmental level to a personal level, more and more people will need to be intentionally displaced into our culture with personal, integrated spirituality “as they go.”  We’ve done this corporately as a church, but now we must do this more and more individually and within groups as a church.  Community groups need to become on mission groups, or groups of missionaries that hold each other accountable for being on mission the rest of the week.  A silent witness hoping someone will see Jesus is not what this is about.  Serving, loving, meeting needs, and giving verbal reasons for the hope we have IS the idea.  It is a full out mobilization of God’s people into everyday ministry.

Two thirds of my way through, I’m a bit frustrated how Hirsch and Ferguson really make all of this very complicated with charts, lists, and elaborate systems marked by a plethora of acronyms.  I’m sure it’s all good stuff, but Biblically sensible and simple makes more sense in my head, and keeps ministry creative, free, and wonderfully organic.

As I was setting up my daily work station on the beach, an older gentleman approached me and said, “Try this.”  He handed me a dog corkscrew tether, and then proceeded to show me how to dig a deeper hole for my umbrella.  I’ve seen people bring cordless drills and a long drill bit for the same sandy job.  There are beach store tools to set umbrellas deep, or you can just dig by hand like I do.  However, the corkscrew tether thingy was great.  It was simple, it worked, and the guy had two so he gave me one!  Awesome.

Hirsch & Ferguson lay out systems, practices, paradigms, flow diagrams, and long lists of values to create a gospel movement in our churches.  There are things here that spark my thinking, but I’m wondering if simpler is better.  With Jesus being Lord, disciples making disciples, and individuals and smaller groups intentionally displacing themselves beyond their living rooms and our church walls… something is gonna happen.  Our gathering will be even more powerful and necessary, and our scattering will finally begin to change culture instead of culture changing us.

I’ll finish off “On The Verge Tomorrow.”  I’ll wrap up study break for this year.  There are God threads through this two week ordeal that I want to try and pull together tomorrow.  For now, I gotta go face my fears in a dark ocean.  More intentional displacement.  I just know something is gonna happen!

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