Archives For relationships

Stop the weird people!

20 August, 2013 — 13 Comments

I’ve just finished the longest rest I’ve had in a long time: sitting on a plane for 23 hours flying to London. I’m looking forward to Greenbelt this weekend!
For two days last week I attended the annual Baptist Pastor’s Conference for the South Island (NZ) ministers. It was pretty good. It was mostly sitting listening to people talk, and I listened with my usual filter looking for signs of engagement with communication issues.


The highlight of this was during an interview panel of pastors facilitated by Murray Robertson from the Leadership Network. To the panel of three pastors he asked them why their churches were part of a small minority of (I think about ten) Baptist churches in New Zealand that have increased in size over the last five years. The comment I thought was the most revealing in terns of considering communication, was along the lines of:
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I could easily spend several hours every week “having coffee” with people I know who have stopped going to church services. I like talking to people who are either well on the fringe of church (having moved from the centre) or have left completely. I like talking with these people because I appreciate hearing stories of their experiences and often frustration with church. If I didn’t work for the church I might be one of these people.

Whenever I see a bus telling me it isn’t in service, I think of Sundays and churches and those who aren’t in church services on Sundays, especially those who used to be but aren’t anymore. ┬áThere’s another way to frame “NOT IN SERVICE” and I’ll end this post with that.

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The “kingdom of God” is a phrase translated into English from something that was central to the teaching of Jesus. This phrase has become church jargon. What does it actually mean? Is the intended original significance lost in the way it gets used today?

How do you describe the kingdom of God?

Are you able to simply define the kingdom of God to someone not part of the church who has never been Christianised?
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In its most basic form communication is the establishment of common ground in terms of shared understanding. If there is no common ground, there is an inability to reach shared understanding, which means there will be an inability to communicate effectively. Akaroa, New Zealand

When I think of any communication process as an attempt to gain shared understanding about something, it helps me to think of those who are receiving or sharing in my communication, as well as the context in which the communication is occurring.

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