I heard an amazing talk on “Missional Leadership” this past week by Reggie McNeal. He made a comparison on the church and an airport and that we sometimes get confused on the goal.
If an airport gets confused on its role and goals – it might begin to think that the Airport – is the destination. If all the planes are on the ground and the concourse is full of people all gathered in one place – then the airport has lost its goal! What is the airport’s goal you ask??? Great question!
The church sometimes gets confused in its goals as well. We tend to start looking like an airport with all the cars in the parking lot, buildings and programs full, and people gathering in one location (and counted!!!). We’ve missed it. What is the goal? Also… Great question!
I think we know the answer is the airport. Its goal is to be a connector – a HUB if you will – to the world! The airport has people pass through AS THEY ARE GOING to a destination. Those that travel for a living, frequent the airport – has favorite spots to sit and rest, and knows the program fairly well. It also has the first time flyers, those that need to be shown where to find what they need AS THEY ARE GOING to the gate to reach their destination. The Primary purpose of the airport is to be a HUB for these people to connect to the world.
What if the church understood it’s end goal as something very similar. That we are a HUB, a connector to the KINGDOM. That we have regulars that frequent us, but only as a stopping point to their lives that are living IN THE KINGDOM. We help those that are “first timers” understand the church as not a stopping point but a connection point to something MUCH BIGGER. We supply, fuel, and support the people living out the Kingdom mission (GREAT COMMISSION – “as you are going…”). What if we viewed the people in our church as those “passing through” and not “arriving”. What if the goal was not to “gather” but instead “send off”.
Reggie McNeal’s talk on Missional Leadership is available for download and purchase at the following website. I encourage you to listen to this incredible talk. http://www.catalystspace.com/store/