Finding Church Finding Church

Finishing Up Our Discussion

Posted on: December 6th, 2017 by Wayne Jacobsen No Comments

Finishing Up Our Discussion

We began our book discussion in May of 2016 and through my travel, surgeries, and other places God invited my life, we’ve finally arrived at the end. Today I posted the categories for the last two chapters.  Feel free to participate there if you want. This board will stay up as others may just want to start from the beginning and work their way through. I will continue to monitor this discussion and contribute where I think my thoughts might be helpful. This discussion has been all I hoped it would be and more. I’m grateful for those of you who have read and participated as you have processed this material in your own journey. Chapter 21: The Difficult Questions […]

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Living Beyond the Congregation: Chapter 20

Posted on: October 18th, 2017 by Wayne Jacobsen No Comments

Living Beyond the Congregation: Chapter 20

Our book discussion on Finding Church continues with Chapter 20: Beyond the Congregation. If you have given up trying to find the community your heart hungers for in an institutional environment, where else can you find it? For many of us fellowship was just a matter of attending services or house meetings every week, without that being pre-planned for us we have to take a more intentional approach to connecting with people in a way that opens the door for community. This chapter is designed to encourage people to look beyond those institutional methods, including house church as a new system, and open your heart to the relationships God wants to give you that are already around your life. As friendships […]

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Book Discussion Continues with Chapter 19

Posted on: September 12th, 2017 by Wayne Jacobsen No Comments

Book Discussion Continues with Chapter 19

Our book discussion on Finding Church continues with Chapter 19: The New Creation and the Traditional Congregation.  The new creation can express itself everywhere, including in our traditional congregations. This chapter gives us a chance to look at how we can recognize it taking shape there and help us discern where the group dynamics reflect the priorities of Jesus’ kingdom and where the wittingly or unwittingly detract from it. Many people who want to know Jesus usually look first at those places we’ve called “church” for so long. All our human constructions are a bit of a mixed bag. Looking for perfect reflections of the new creation will exhaust you. Better yet to celebrate the new creation where you find […]

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Chapter 18: A Different Kind of Leadership

Posted on: August 23rd, 2017 by Wayne Jacobsen No Comments

Chapter 18: A Different Kind of Leadership

Our book discussion on Finding Church continues with chapter 18: Equipping Without Subduing. For the last two centuries the view of leadership in Christianity is remarkable similar to the world’s view with command and control at the heart of leadership. How does that work in a kingdom where leaders don’t “lord over” and where we are all brothers and sisters before anything else? Not. Very. Well. If Jesus is going to be the head of his church then we need  different kind of leadership–not those who can manage crowds with their charisma and humor, but those who can equip people to know, listen to, and follow the Head himself.  In fact, “leadership” isn’t a great translation for anything in the […]

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Book Discussion Continues with Chapter 17

Posted on: July 25th, 2017 by Wayne Jacobsen No Comments

Book Discussion Continues with Chapter 17

Our book discussion on Finding Church continues with chapter 17: Unity Without Conformity. This is one of my favorite chapters, because most people cannot imagine a unity of the church that does not come from manipulating political and institutional structures to get people to do what is right. But conformity will never produce the wholehearted unity that Jesus prayed for his Father to give us. That kind of unity only comes out of transformed hearts and lives where the glory of God has come to in habits a human vessel, and that vessel connects with others so that the temple rises across the whole planet showing the principalities and powers that God is able to take selfish humans and knit […]

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Chapter 16: Order Without Control

Posted on: June 26th, 2017 by Wayne Jacobsen No Comments

Chapter 16: Order Without Control

Our book discussion on Finding Church continues with chapter 16. If you’ve never seen it work, it is hard to imagine how Jesus can bring order to his family without the need for human management. So much of our management tactics are designed to mitigate those who would exploit the body of Christ for their own needs, but employing them gives us a short-term answer at the expense of long-term freedom and life. Human management is a scheme of the old creation and as such it will always fail over time. While men and women of great character and compassion can do fairly well with it for a season, their tacts will trend away from a growing dependence on Jesus […]

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Chapter 15: Authority Without Hierarchy

Posted on: May 29th, 2017 by Wayne Jacobsen No Comments

Chapter 15: Authority Without Hierarchy

Nothing begs us to comprehend the difference between human effort and the way God works in the kingdom more than in our perception of authority. Humans establish authority by titles, and hierarchical flow charts. Jesus establishes authority on the power of someone’s character and the truth of what they are saying. It is possible for people to have institutional authority and have little or no spiritual authority. Likewise, someone may have absolutely no authority in earthly terms but carry great weight spiritually. Separating these two will help you know who carries the kind of authority that truly matters to God. One of the important factor in this chapter is learning to recognize spiritual authority when it is near your life. […]

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Finding Church is Now Available in a French Translation

Posted on: May 29th, 2017 by Wayne Jacobsen No Comments

Finding Church is Now Available in a French Translation

Finding Church is now available in French as Découvrir l’église, thanks to the translation work of a dear friend of mine, Silvio Viotti from Switzerland.  He has translated many of my books into French as an act of love for the French-speaking world. Thank you, Silvio, for your service to the Gospel in this way. I hear from so many who are touched by the availability of these books in French. The evangelical community in France is incredibly small and those looking outside the borders of the traditional congregation are even smaller. So these don’t sell in great quantities there, but they do provide some encouragement to those who are learning to live more freely in the life of Jesus. If you know anyone […]

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Chapter 14: Gatherings Without Meetings

Posted on: April 12th, 2017 by Wayne Jacobsen No Comments

Chapter 14: Gatherings Without Meetings

Let’s move on to chapter 14 in our book discussion of Finding Church: Gatherings Without Meetings. Most of our engagements with other Christians have come in meetings, regulated from the front with an agenda or ritual that must be served. No wonder our focus is on accomplishing tasks more than it is to grow in Jesus-centered friendships with other people. Isn’t it interesting that Jesus never organized or held any kind of routine meeting? Instead he spent time with people wherever he engaged them, on a street, in a home, on the beach, in a boat, or on a walk.  Those environments gave him all he needed to help them discover the life of the kingdom and to engage the relationships that would best encourage them. […]

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Chapter 13: Devotion Without Obligation

Posted on: February 20th, 2017 by Wayne Jacobsen No Comments

Chapter 13: Devotion Without Obligation

Let’s move on to chapter 13 in our book discussion of Finding Church: Devotion Without Obligation. So much of religion is crafted around fear and guilt, forcing people to do what they “should” do, rather than learning how Jesus passion begins to overrun their own and they actually have a desire to be about the things Jesus is about. That doesn’t mean there are times when we won’t act simply because it is the right thing to do, but by only living out of obligation we unwitting kill the growing affection of God in our hearts. This chapter invites us to switch gears from doing what we “should” to a growing devotion to Christ that loving others, connecting with them, and walking with them […]

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Chapter 12: Not Made With Hands

Posted on: January 21st, 2017 by Wayne Jacobsen No Comments

Chapter 12: Not Made With Hands

The book discussion of Finding Church continues on our discussion forum with Chapter 12: Not Made With Hands. I’m getting ready to leave for Israel, but let’s start this chapter and see what we can discover over the next couple of weeks. This is one of my favorite chapters. How do we learn to trust God’s efforts more than our own. This is the key to being fruitful and fulfilled in his kingdom. It won’t make us couch potatoes, because we’ll be more active than ever, but not with our own futile efforts, but cooperating with the way he is making himself known to us and people around us. Here’s Paul’s story in Philippians 3:3-9 (emphasis mine): For it is […]

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Chapter 11: In First Place…

Posted on: January 5th, 2017 by Wayne Jacobsen No Comments

Chapter 11: In First Place…

Before I had to have surgery and the holidays came upon us, we had just completed Chapter 10 in our discussion of Finding Church. I’m sorry that my surgery and the holidays interrupted our flow here and hopefully we can now finish the book over the next few months. We’ll start the new year with Chapter 11, _In First Place._ The church of Jesus thrives where people are relating to and focused on him. Most of us have learned to negotiate human relationships based on our competing desires and affections and who has the power to get their way and who is forced to go along. The church Jesus is building doesn’t play that game. As people engage a growing […]

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Chapter 10: The Family Way

Posted on: October 26th, 2016 by Wayne Jacobsen No Comments

Chapter 10: The Family Way

The book discussion of Finding Church continues on our discussion forum with Chapter 10: The Family Way.  With this chapter we begin the second part of the book, where we can train our eyes tor recognize the church that Jesus is building in the world and how it differs from the one humanity is building. The two can co-exist in the same environment, but the human versions are always preoccupied with corporate realities–doctrines, programs, budgets, policies, and order. The church Jesus is building has its focus on him and learning to follow him. It prizes love as a way of living, healthy relationships with other believers and the world, and functions is a functional family rather than a corporation. Seeing […]

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Chapter 9: Loved Into Life

Posted on: October 4th, 2016 by Wayne Jacobsen No Comments

Chapter 9: Loved Into Life

Our book discussion continues with a look at Chapter 9: Chapters 8, 9, and 10 undermine our presupposition that if we get the community right, it will produce disciples. That’s the hope that underscored all my pastoral work. If we can just get the right program in place and people follow it we will experience the life of the church. But we can’t. The life of the church doesn’t rise from a different structure or program, but from a different kind of believer, one that is growing in their trust of the Father’s affection and thus can live differently and love differently in the world. The reason this gives us a better shot at relationships is because we aren’t so […]

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A Whole Lot More Than We Realize

Posted on: September 23rd, 2016 by Wayne Jacobsen No Comments

A Whole Lot More Than We Realize

I got this email this morning from and friend of mine in England and I love it. This exactly how Jesus knits his family together. And wouldn’t that be the best way for him to do it? He doesn’t need facilities or long-term planning. He can at any moment bring two or three of his flock together and anything can happen that lightens a load, encourages someone’s journey, or just blesses them in a wonderful way even if they never cross paths in this life again. Here’s the story in Robin’s own words: I’m so thrilled and excited at what I’m learning about community that I had to share it with somebody, and as you understand some of these things, […]

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