Is Jacob’s Well very, very new? Or very, very old?
A common theme in Claiborne’s book is the echoes of the past that he feels in what he is doing. He compares his ‘reformation’ (my word, not his) to that of St Francis of Assisi (p.65) and others – even Jesus! I don’t think he is wrong. But what he is doing is so future too. He is very ‘disestablishment’ and trying to make the church speak to a new generation rather than the past.
I ask the same question about Jacob’s Well. Yeah, we are very modern. We use current music, video, a lot of high tech stuff (we had our trailer “stolen” once so we had to put a service on without all our ‘toys’ and we found it went just fine. Although I think we all agree the toys add a lot.) But I also feel like we are really, really old. No, we aren’t part of the emergent church movement doing the ‘ancient future’ thing (google it if you don’t know what ancient future is), but we are doing the original thing. We are taking our passion for what God is up to, and connecting it to our lives using the language and stuff of our age.
Isn’t that what the 1st century church did? This is really old stuff.
I don’t think the overall message has changed just eh way we present it. I think it is all about applying the teachings of Jesus to your everyday life, we have to modernize in order to keep it relavent to our struggles and passions now.
Is being really modern…really old. It seems like all the new hitech stuff is holding us back. Peace, hymns, focusing of GOD’s presence seems to be the way new churches are doing things. Do you find that the hitech stuff is helping or hindering growing closer to GOD at JW?
There are many ways churches are doing things. There are many doors to God. I believe that whatever you use as part of worship or congregational life requires the same ‘stance.’ What you use or do must be a door opening toward God, or it is an end unto itself, an idol. One leads towards life, the other is a dead end. God is big enough and the Spirit powerful enough to use nearly anything as a door.
I do not believe that the way we are being ‘church’ at Jacob’s Well is the only way to do it, but I do know that what we are doing, and a lot of it is pretty hitech, is touching people’s lives. It is connecting them to God and to one another. That’s all I have to know. The rest I trust to God and ask for forgiveness when I screw up.
After all, isn’t the conversation you and I are having opening doors of thought and understanding? It is for me, and it is certainly hitech! I don’t know that I’ve ever met you in person, or conversed with you in such a Luddite fashion as by telephone 🙂
Thanks for the thoughts. Feel free to push your point if you wish!