Episode 035: A Conversation with Louie Giglio

For this conversation, we sit down with Louie Giglio and discuss the Passion movement, worship, and everything in-between.

 

I love that crossroads of life that is the university moment… we said yes to God and 22 years later we’re still gathering students… it’s not a conference really, or an event, but a purposed movement praying God will open eyes to see what life is really about—the glory of God…

 

We weren’t trying to build a monument; we were trying to be a fuse, we wanted to be an explosion, we wanted to see God start doing something that was unexplainable…

 

When college students come in, everything they’ve learned up to that point suspends… The university is a crossroads of life… people stop deciding for what their parents believed and start deciding what they believe… and that’s where you want to be standing—with the person of Jesus…

 

Early on [in the Passion movement], there was a presumption of “normal American life”… now we’re on the backside of the greatest economic depression in our memory, with lots of instability, and kids now are anxious and depressed and have so many conversations every day that they don’t even know who they are anymore…

 

But there’s also a belief [with this generation] that our voice matters… people want to congregate now… they believe there’s something more than the old school American dream… they want to make their lives count…

 

When I was younger I thought that way you make the biggest impact on the world is that you go to most places you can and speak to the most people you can speak to…

 

At 40 I had a wakeup moment where I realized that you make the greatest impact by staying in the same place for a longest amount of time to see the reproductive power of the gospel at work in the generational cycles that come… I wanted to root somewhere…

 

The calling to lead worship is holy… the heart of worship is still someone who worships in their closet, they like the lobby better than the green room, they like the mirror of the Word better than the mirror, and they come to lead the people and not to lead the songs…

 

There are 1000 people out there who know how to lead songs… we need leaders who have an anointing and an authority to lead people…

 

 

RESOURCES

Episode 034: Reflections on Willow Creek

For this conversation, we discuss the situation at Willow Creek and how this should cause us to reflect and pay attention in a deeper way.

 

This situation should cause us to reflect and pay attention in a deeper way…

 

There are three groups of people here: the victims, the congregation, and Bill and the leadership—it’s important to separate those groups of people, and each group needs special attention…

 

But it starts first with those who were violated… those victims need to be listened to and given every opportunity to heal… they need our primary attention…

 

The first thing the new leadership must do is re-establish trust and credibility, or they won’t be able to help anyone… they need to slow down and simplify…

 

At New Life [after our crises], we cleared our calendars, stopped doing outside events, and became a church family again… for us, it was about prayer, worship, Scripture, and sacraments…

 

What I would say to Willow Creek is that you don’t know how hurt you are right now… take some time, take a deep breath, and do a full evaluation before you move ahead…

 

There are some systemic problems in the American church culture… number one: pastors are not designed or called by God to be celebrities… the moment we embrace a celebrity culture in the church we are headed for a train wreck… it has to stop…

 

We have a lot of orphans that are leading churches who haven’t learned how to be sons and daughters… you can’t be a mom or a dad before you’ve been a son or a daughter… in the church, we’ve skipped this step…

 

If your first thought is “We have to protect the church” you are in huge error… the call is not to protect the institution but to help people get healed… Jesus was not interested in guarding the religious institutions of his day, he was interested in bringing healing… if it cost the institution, then so be it…

 

If you think about the parable of the lost sheep, the 99 represented the economic good of the shepherd… Jesus was willing to risk the institution of the 99 for the sake of the one… if Jesus is the Head of the church, he is capable of sustaining the church when there is bad news…

 

The Lord brought Willow into existence and he is going to bring it back to a place of fruitfulness, so let’s pray and speak blessing over them…

Episode 003: Big Church & Small Church

Big Church, Small Church. Is one better than the other? In this conversation, we talk about the valuable lessons we’ve learned from comparing church models.

 



ECP Show Notes – EPISODE 003

Big vs. small church

“The fight is the same everywhere…we’re trying to figure out how to speak compellingly to people about robust kingdom life and then develop patterns of community life that invite people in…”

“There’s no escaping the spirit of our age…we are trained to be consumers…”

“One of the things that this conundrum did to us is it forced us to wrestle with a theology of vocation…’church participation’ is not always an accurate index of how people are participating in kingdom life…”

“Pastors notoriously measure the wrong things…you can’t measure every facet of discipleship…”

“One of the things that we constantly wrestled with [in our small church context] was hubris—pride… that we were the pure ones… when we saw that we had many of the same warts as other churches it was a real moment of reckoning… it made us humble…”

“The temptation in the megachurch is attributing success to attendance…sometimes we put on a big event and a lot of people flood in, and it feeds a part of my soul that is not good for me… because I start feeling like that is the moment of success…the megachurch is prone to events and the ‘big thing’ that feeds our ego…”

“Having a building full of people is not the end goal…”

“The tension of every church is the tension between simplicity and hospitality…there’s a point at which simplicity becomes inhospitable…”

“There’s a lot of self-righteous behavior in the church…we had better start working together or we are going to die alone…”

“Reality is always more interesting than caricatures…”

“A lot of this boils down to lazy analysis…even surveys and statistics, you can’t totally trust them because they don’t tell a whole story…you have to press in and look a little bit closer…”

“Here’s the bottom line: our desire is the same… let’s take care of the people the Lord sends us… and that’s the common ground…”

Questions for you and your team
1) What are some of the ways that consumerism has impacted your model?
2) How do you and your team understand “the bullseye” for your ministry work? Does that understanding need to shift in any way?
3) What are the unique temptations and vulnerabilities of your model?
4) How can you more clearly articulate kingdom-life into your context and develop patterns of community that match that kingdom-life?
5) What are some ways that you can begin to learn from other church models?