A Friend Who Sticks Closer Than a Brother

The place where Faith and I found God’s people is, I suppose, where they are always to be found – at the very bottom of things – the low point – the pit.  There are people who put you in pits and there are those who rescue from the pit.   It is sometimes hard to know which are which until one group has thrown you in the pit and the other is pulling you out. Faith and I were choking on the dirt until this fine group of saints dug us out.  The resulting ministry is something of a pit rescue team.  A Christian community has come together (I cannot determine exactly how) which is seeking to do life together and to share love and learning locally and beyond. Continue reading “A Friend Who Sticks Closer Than a Brother”

We are (Not That) Church: The Forging Ploughshares Story

The convergence of the people making up the community of Forging Ploughshares is a story unto itself.  Among us we have tried the megachurch, the rural church, the Roman Church, and the mission Church. We have come together more out of desperation than any organized intent.  Most of us are millennials, one of the least churched groups in America.[1] I am suspicious (as a boomer) that the generational divide on this issue has more to do with an older generation which has come to expect very little.[2]  Whatever reason my generation is most happy to attend ordinary church (40%), they apparently do not attend so as to grow their faith (according to Barna).  The generational disaffection (some 59% of millennials who have grown up in church have left) may reflect a determined unwillingness to settle.   Millennials find church irrelevant and presume God himself is absent from the institution.  They are looking for honesty in regard to hard questions but most of all they are looking for a cure for loneliness – and Church is not perceived as speaking to either issue.[3]  In other words, church as we mostly have it, is not being the Church. Continue reading “We are (Not That) Church: The Forging Ploughshares Story”