What is the first thing you think of when you think of God? Angry man in the sky? A delusion and invention of mankind to keep us in order? Jesus? Love? Well, what is the first thing you think of when you think of church? Boring? Irrelevant? Outdated? Man wearing a dress? Pews? Mass? Jesus? Love?
My guess is that none of you would instinctively think of the word fun… Well, I want to challenge you! I want you to imagine being Peter or John or Paul. Put yourselves in their shoes and then read either one of the four Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke or John) or the book of Acts in the Bible and tell me again what word you would use to describe God or the church. I think you might use the word “exciting” or “outrageous” or “miraculous” or “powerful” or “wonderful” or “inspiring” but you certainly can’t say it is boring, irrelevant and outdated! In fact, you might say that life with Jesus was fun. Now why is that? Because arguably, the biggest theme of the whole bible is mission.
Now I am not talking about street preachers or people going overseas to start schools, and I am certainly not talking about the crusades or any form of enforced conversion to the Christian faith. I am talking about how the God of the Bible has a deep, passionate and relentless love which means he will go to any lengths and take his people on dangerous adventures to restore and reclaim his broken world. That is what mission is all about…adventure!
So when I say “what happened to all the fun?” I am not talking about why don’t we laugh more in church (though we should!) and I am not talking about doing fun things together as a community (though we will!). I am talking about becoming caught up in an adventure with God where we get to restore broken lives, bring light into darkness, bless the city, love the poor, create culture, bring order out of chaos, welcome outsiders, break down barriers and do all the other things God does so well! Ultimately we get to love people!
Now whilst being on adventure is not always easy, it is never boring and it is full of surprises. And if you’ll just take yourself a bit less seriously and admit you make a mess of it from time to time, it is tonnes of fun!
The vision of Christ City Church is to make a positive impact spiritually, culturally and socially. The first value we have that enables us and guides us to do that is ‘mission’ – being on an adventure with God which is full of surprises, totally exhilarating, full of learning, discipline and even suffering but also, I hope, fun!
**This is part 2 of a series of 6 looking at our vision and values. The vision of Christ City Church Dublin is to make a difference to the city spiritually, culturally and socially. Our four values are mission, discipleship, community and leadership. Check out more on our vision and values page.