Tools & Trainings  for  Organic Church Movements  
Issue No. 11                                                                                                                    06.24.08 
Recently I attended the Sunday service of a church looking to be "missional." Knowing my research interests, a key staff person spoke with me about a whip-bang event they're planning, complete with free food and bounce houses for the kids. "We're trying to reach out to the neighborhood," she told me.  

Although I didn't mean to, I think my heart went numb. My simple question is this one: When will we come to understand that "missional" isn't the next event, but the next breath, all that we are, used of God, led by the Spirit to usher in the Kingdom to any and all "dark" places? "You [not free food or bounce houses] are the light of the world" [Mt 5:14]. I tell you the truth, as long as we think in terms of events we're sunk in the water.  

Does this mean bounce houses and hot dogs are off limits? Absolutely not. For example, my friend Scott Wilson makes use of his Big Red Bus appropriately; that is, he doesn't see "Big Red" as a tool, but as a blessing. There's a difference. Scott puts it this way, "We want to love people whether they ever love our God or not." When we use tools, we manipulate. When we bless, we're a blessing. 

In the end, motives will always find us out. And too often, when we "do" events, we're looking for a "return," thereby "objectifying" people. Instead, let's be faithful to embody the gospel, sow the Word (often by sharing verbally), let God bring a harvest, and reap when the time is right.  

When it comes to missional, think nets, not hooks. Jesus said, "Come, follow me, and I will make you fishers of people" (Mt 4:19). Notice the imagery. Hooks are baited, attractional. Nets of relationships, however, are all-encompassing and those in the process of being "caught" are swept away in a torrent of love.  

Now, with Jesus at the helm, let's go throw our nets on the other side of the boat.


Traver Dougherty 
Church Multiplication Associates
(Traver wrote this in his regular "Helpful Tid Bits for Organic Church Life"  on June 23, 2008.  You can sign up for the e-newsletter here)
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Trainings in the planning stages for Fall 2008:

  • Chicago, IL  //  Story 1
  • San Diego, CA  //  Story 1
  • Long Beach, CA  // Story 1 &  2

Other Training Opportunities:

July 20- August 1 Student Church Planting Experience in Kansas City Jaeson Ma and more as trainers.
Details at

August 28-31 in Dallas, TX - House2House Labor Day Conference. All the information is at

August 28-31 in Ethiopia  Neil Cole will be sharing organic church principles.

September 18-19 in Orlando, FL  Neil Cole will be speaking at the Blossom Conference.

September 26-October 2 in Hong Kong Neil Cole will be sharing organic church principles.

February 19-21, 2009 Organic Leadership - CMA Conference 2009

Long Beach, CA @ The Grand > stay tuned HERE

Featured Resources

Missional House ChurchesNEW Item>>Missional House Churches: Reaching Our Communities with the Gospel- J. D. Payne 

Missional House Churches examines house churches in the United States that are making disciples through evangelism and church planting. Based on personal experience, research, and interviews with thirty-three missional house church leaders, this work offers a peek into an area of the church that few have seen.

Topics addressed include: the recent growth in the popularity of house churches in the United States, what defines church, various characteristics of the house churches, methods of evangelism and leadership development which lead to growth, use of financial resources for missions and benevolence, the future of house churches in North America, and the relationship of church planting movements and house churches.

Those interested in learning about house churches, as well as students, missionaries, and mission and church leaders will benefit by knowing what is going on in the world of house churches that are reaching their communities.

The World Needs Heroes. Are you one of them? Christians today are on a rescue mission. Each of us is called to get involved in God's plan to make disciples. Church planter Neil Cole knowa about saving lives: he is a former California lifeguard. In Search & Rescue he takes the lessons learned form that experience and applies them to our mission of rescuing people from darkness and leading them into the kingdom of God.

Weaving together his personal experiences of saving lives with biblical principles for how to make and multiply disciples, Cole shows how to create Life Transformation Groups that can help a Christian grow in a safe and transparent relationship with one or two other spiritual pilgrims.

Full of heroic and even humorous stories, Search & Rescue captures readers' imaginations and hearts and doesn't let go until they want to make a difference and know how to go about doing it.

Read 2 chapters free: - "Between a Rock & a Hard Place & What is a Real Hero in God's Kingdom?

Featured Article
Innovative Leaders 
by Dr. Jerry Porter
Innovative leaders are called to be LONE RANGERS. When the Lord is asking me to introduce new methods to the church, that assignment often includes the call to be a lonely prophetic voice. The Church cannot bless and support every new idea that comes down the pike. The best we can expect when launching a new idea is to be granted permission to "experiment." That is all we need. "During the next year may I experiment with ____ new method?" The church leaders give permission and if it turns out well, everybody jumps on board and they comment, "I knew that all along!" If the experiment fails, they never knew us and they forget they gave us permission to experiment!

Thus the two primary temptations for the God-called creative innovator are:

Check out the new search engine for the articles on the CMA Resources website>> HERE