One of today's nexus seminars was a conversation on emerging church. John Drane, the speaker offered loads of wisdom that comes from real experience of the nature of the beast. But a dialogue I had with another participant helped me to articulate something that's been floating about in my head for a while: Emerging Church is not about novelty. Its about creativity. Its not about introducing lots of new things just to appear trendy but more about using the threads of history and tradition to weave a new way of being church. There was also, for me, some affirmation that emerging church can develop out of and alongside traditional church - it doesn't have to be a reaction to or in opposition to what already exists. Intentionally creating space for folk to explore the activity of God in the everyday recognises Christ incarnate - not what would Jesus do but what is Jesus doing. God is active in our communities despite us.
I've wondered for a while what it is that so re energises me about emerging church when, in fact, it demands lots of time and preparation on my part. Today, something really hit a nerve and may explain the energy giving force for me: Its much easier to speak to folk who are not traditional church about faith than it is about folk inside the walls. That is not to say that we shouldn't keep trying. Church folk need to find salvation too, but folk new to the discussion aren't so hung up and buttoned up.
Another interesting question was on maturity in the church. That, too is something that needs not to be sought from the past, its not dependant on age and experience and a proven record but, rather, about vision for the future, a vision that sees the big picture and that unique yet integral part that is emerging church.