Jeff Vanderstelt on Church via the People

Kent Shaffer —  February 5, 2010

Verge Conference Session 2

Jeff Vanderstelt of Soma Communities (Tacoma, WA) discussed letting the people be the church during Verge Conference’s 2nd session. Here is what he said:

In a lot of the ways, the structures build build to run churches serve as containers to hold people in. It is almost as if we are extracting people from the world rather than sending them out into the world.

Church is not about going out to be Jesus to people. You are going out with Jesus in you. Jesus wants to fill everything. Ideally, a city should be so full of Jesus that there is no one who can escape seeing Jesus.

Everyone is a full-time minister. We just get our paychecks from different places. You do not have to get a paycheck from a church to be a full-time minister. The job of church leaders is to equip people to do ministry rather than trying to do all of the ministry themselves.

Jesus died for more than church events and volunteering to be an usher. The most effective carrier for discipleship is not an event. If you do not go do anything, you are not getting equipped. The best place for equipping is life.

How do you know if someone is faithful to what you have taught them? They have to live it out. Equip people to do normal, everyday life with intentional missional community. You’d be surprised to see what the church can do if you start believing that Jesus is in people.

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Kent Shaffer

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I live in an RV with my wife and 2 kids and work with OpenChurch.com to help Christians collaborate and build a global Church library of free, open content.