Special Episode: Welcoming the Stranger: A Conversation on DACA

“Welcoming the Stranger: A Conversation on DACA”

 

Show Notes

This is important because I’m the pastor of a lot of DACA kids… this is not a political point to me… these are real people that we know… they are human beings with real stories…

Often times when these public issues get discussed, we’re tempted to say we need less emotion and more reason… but emotions are an important key in understanding where people are coming from…

When someone exhibits a lot of emotion over something, it shows that it is something they are very concerned about… which makes it an opportunity for empathy…

[As an immigrant], there is a feeling of fear that is hard to shake… there is a sense of vulnerability here even when you do this the right way…

We believe in safe borders and in the rule of law… I believe in safe, legal immigration because its best for human beings… we need to figure out a way to make immigration safe and legal…

The story of the people of God is a story of immigration… to be the people of God is to be waiting for home… there is a very real theological dimension of this… if we can’t feel that human desire [for home], then I need to check my heart…

“So you love the poor? Then tell me what their names are…” this needs to be able to be named… it needs to be situated in the lives of people…

Christians have a unique ability to be empathetic to those who have been displaced because of the story of our Scriptures…

We need to be a prophetic voice to the political system… I’m calling on Congress and on our President and on our state and local officials to make sure this legislation is done well… we need to let the morality of Jesus to overrule political divisiveness…

There’s a price to pay [as a pastor] for this… anytime I bring up immigration from the pulpit, I get scathing rebukes from people because it has become so politicized…

If a pastor will get up and be compassionate and really welcome diverse viewpoints, you’ll see there are truths in all of the camps…

For me, this cannot be some theoretical discussion… pastors, whatever you do, just get to know these people… we need to be compassionate and help them win…

The kingship of Jesus Christ shapes everything… we don’t want to answer these issues through the prism of our politics… we want to let the surprising and shocking kingdom of God confront us and challenge us and cause us to rethink our positions…

Practically, you can get involved in this… there are immigration attorneys that are willing to do pro bono work… we want to help families go through a legal process… they just need someone to walk alongside them…

If we don’t know their names, we have failed the people in our church…

Resources

Evangelical Immigration Table
Christian Community Development Association

Episode 004: Cultivating a Team-Teaching Model, Pt. 1

What does it look like to share the pulpit and teach the scriptures as a team? Are you considering it for your church, but don’t know how to begin? In the episode, Pastors Brady Boyd, Andrew Arndt, Glenn Packiam, and Daniel Grothe talk about how and why New Life Church embraced the Team Teaching model.

 

EPISODE 004 – Cultivating a Team-Teaching Model Pt 1 – Show Notes

I think the local church is always meant to be led by a symphony of voices…

For me, as a senior pastor, I realized that from a physical standpoint I couldn’t keep doing at 50 what I did when I was 30… that was the pragmatic reason… but theologically, I wanted a symphony of voices at our church…

You can naturally reach people ten years older and younger than you… if we’re going to lead a multi-generational congregation, then we need to have voices that naturally reach certain elements of our congregation…

One of the things that’s been interesting is that we’ve heard from a lot of pastors around the country who are dying to do this… it gives us a chance admit that we need help… it gives our congregation a chance to admit that they need help in their own lives…

Doing it this way cuts down on all our study time… but we have to follow some rules if we’re going to make this work… we have to be able to defend it with each other… we don’t have to use any of each other’s stuff… but if we DO use each other’s stuff, we can’t grasp for credit…

We’re creating a situation with this where you have to lay ego aside… it’s created a collaborative ethos… the congregation can feel that we love each other and love working with each other…

The goal here is not for us to sound the same… the goal is not to be homogeneous but to be in unity… which means that we give each other permission to be different, to be ourselves…

Relationship leads to trust… you can’t hire this… it’s something that has to be invested in… but even with these things, there is inherent risk… are you willing to risk it?

Once you do this, the weight of preaching that is draining the life out of some of you, it will make pastoral ministry really joyful and really fun…

Some of my favorite times of the week are when we sit together on Tuesday mornings and talk through the upcoming sermon… we’re all circling the same big idea but we’re seeing it from a different viewpoint…

The biggest thing for getting started is to get people in the room with you to help you study… bringing a diverse set of voices will help you study better…

Questions for you and your team

1) To what extent does your church reflect a “symphony of voices”?
2) What would change at your church if you adopted this model?
3) What would change in your own work for the church if you adopted this model?
4) What can you do to begin moving in this direction?

Episode 000: Welcome

Welcome to the Essential Church Podcast. As we prepare for releasing our first episodes on Wednesday, we want to encourage you to connect with us on twitter at @EssentialChurch.