We are in a crisis of imagination. We run to Barna for information, but there are people, visionaries who are seeing this stuff 5 years before Barna’s writing about it.
“The problem is we have people so well discipled in technique duplication.
We go out and find the experience, then reduce it to a model, then supplant the model into techniques, then market it. What has happened is that pastors have begun to lose their ability to live specifically in a place, know themselves, know their church, know their neighborhood, and to be able to discern God’s spirit already ahead of them at work and then to respond to what’s going on. And so it’s not as if leaders have got to be able to have all these capacities in themselves. What they have to do is to have the ability to have the freedom and grace to create an environment where those things can exist, and it’s not easy. Because you want to control it, and you can’t do that. Control kills creativity.”
For any church leader the kind of leadership described above is not easy and pretty scary. First, it is obvious that Tim is reacting against the leadership of buying ministry in a box. One word that Keel uses for leadership, especially for himself is intuitive.
Why intuitive? Something largely important that I see in the emerging church is the stress on the Holy Spirit. I don't necessarily mean speaking in tongues or healing. What I mean is that as a community and leader of Christ we must be able to look out into out communities and see where God is already working.
One problem we face in churches is ministry. Ministry has become an idol for many. Why do we have youth ministry, evangelism, hospital, visitation, etc ministry? For many, we do these things out of "just because." Just because we have always had it, or some church in California does this ministry, "so should we."
Where does ministry come from? Certainly not from the outside. Rather ministry occurs fluidly out of community. When a healthy family has a crisis, do they have to form committees to solve the problem? No, but the problem is still ministered to. From Community flows ministry.
Therefore, we must gather as a community of Christ followers and look into our communities to find where God is already at work in HIS creation. Instead of forcing a ministry onto people, the minstry flows out of the creative imagination of the community.