Three weeks into quarantine and I was ready to talk to other local church champions asking new questions about the look of the local church in the weeks, months, maybe years to come. So I signed up for the Resilient Church Academy. Knowing I would have better conversations as it relates to the local church I serve, I invited and paid for one of my Super Champions to take the same class with me. Together we would be immersed in one class and could process together from the content provided as it related to our context of ministry with children in our local church. #bettertogether
Though I felt I had no time to add one more thing, taking the class made my brain stop spiraling and instead, remain focused on a task at hand: learn something new about how to become something new and prepare for a new, massive culture shift. This would go beyond the bazillion webinars, podcasts, Zoom calls, and Facebook Live events I found myself swimming in. All good stuff, but I was “on” from 5am until my cell phone died the second time each day before I felt I could call it a day. There was no entire day for Sabbath, no rest in my brain, no stopping of the treading water of the conversations of every day about every day. I wanted to talk beyond today, beyond lamenting or grieving what we felt lost, and beyond how I was going to get groceries by the end of the week. My families were trying to work from home and school from home and event plan from home and get groceries by the end of the week, too.
I took the Innovation Academy Track of The Resilient Church Academy for six weeks and it was perfect for the unknown we were headed into.
Almost everything in continuing education is on demand now and carving out time to do this two hours each week was exactly what I needed, and my congregation needed me to do, in this liminal, in-between time. As we participated in this class, we developed the McEachern Kids Drive-in services for the summer and gathered a team of creative types to rally alongside to be the leaders, connectors, master ideators, in their giftedness, to navigate today and even over the next two years.
Why two years? According to numerous conversations with folks immersed in history, it took society 2.5 years to move into some sort of regularity following the Spanish Flu pandemic of 100 years ago in the US. I think that’s a perfect time-frame to spread out faith formation in innovative and multiple next-steps. That time-frame gives us time to offer tools to lead our current church families into their next steps AND provide multiple points of entry with their own next steps for families just now looking for a church home and tools for pointing their kids to Jesus. Sharing life with the families here now AND reach the families outside looking for a place…er, a people, to build their new tribe. Stay tuned!
A new season of Resilient Church Academy begins on August 3.
If you’re tired of what-do-we-do thoughts swirling in your head or need a tribe of innovators to help you think more clearly, Resilient Church Academy is for you.
If you are looking for a way to jump-start new thought processes or need to hear other voices to help you with vocabulary of forward movement and hang out with brave people, Resilient Church Academy is for you.
If you are ready to stop waiting for other people to tell you what to do and instead, see what’s in your hands (or closets) to fulfill God’s call on your life precisely WHERE God has called you to serve, Resilient Church Academy is a good place to start.
The best way to become a brave, hungry, creative pioneer is to spend time with other brave, hungry, creative pioneers.
“David told his son Solomon, ‘Be strong and courageous, and do the work. Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord God, my God, is with you. He will not fail you or forsake you until all the work for the service of the temple of the Lord is finished’.” 1 Chronicles 28:20