Monday, March 30, 2009

New Hope

Yes, its been awhile, since i logged on. Been waiting patiently to see the developments happening in our Church, all i can say now is that it does seems more neutral parties are joining HGI.

There is conflicting reports that Ps PN has managed to get most Hope Church outside bangkok to join them . Well its still very political in Thailand and its really sad that what once used to be a great movement, where we preached against being political and being God focused has turned to this

HGI will take sometime to help restablish the HGI churches and do some changes, I do know though that PN is starting their own international Church planting, sure will be interesting

I think most churches now know the split, but lets see what happens from here....

I really really hope that after this next 6 months HGI will do something different, though Hope had alot of great principles, i do know many of the methods are just not sustainable in the long run and maybe that is why people burn out instead of burn in. Personally i do hope we can cut out some things which Hope use to do and adopt some methods which has proved successful in other church. Keep principle the same but we can try different method

For one... I think Musically and service wise we can improve. I do think the previous hope structure does not allow musicians to develop. Because, to go on stage you need to be CGL or UL or be involved in ministry. But because, we have so many meetings- SDMM, DMM, and other ministry like shepherding and leading CG... often time you will find those who want to pursue worship ministry have so many other work to do that often time people cannot be fully released to their potential.

I think also it would be good to allow people to breathe, sometimes in our old structure, because of the 1 million goal we push people to go on missions. But to me i think, God created us all different and we all will grow at different speed, have different passion and potential. I do think therefore we need to keep a good balance between qantity growth and quality growth

Since we no longer have to do 1 million churches by 2015, so we set ourselves a more realistic goal. We should have a HGI website link all our churches, set up a main and central office. Provide centralise training and establish a bible school for those who wants to be trained to go on missions. so instead of sending 2 to 3 people we can send 20-30 at the same time.

Better transparency.. since this split was for one due to money.. i think to move on... we need to establish better accountablility over finance and make sure that the same do not happen both in mrico and marco level.

So far i think, no hope churches have ever announce their P&L on line or on their website. And there was previously no report on our overall movement finance.

I think taking a leaf from Singapore, i do know and heard that recently some churches and religious organisation was audited. I do know some of the mega church put their P&L online and have allowed their books to be transparent.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Principle vs Method

When a revival happens, it is often started by one person who have received something from God. Be it Martin Luther or The Wesley brothers. Each is responsible to add back what was lost to bring the church back to where God will come eventually for His glorious church .

In my time as a christian, we have gone from Singing Hymns with Church organ to Praise and worship and a full band, from a non-tongue speaking person to one filled with the Holy spirit and moving in the gift of God. From a congregational church to a cell-church.

As we come closer to the end times, i see God adding more facets to the church and it is important that we must allow the Holy spirit to lead us in this new area of our church life. We are called a movement because it is always moving and changing.

But it is important to also always realise that we must not let methods become principle and principle become the law. If things doesn't work, we need to change, we need to learn also from other churches and see what God is doing around the world.

Many of my friends who have left the church, often have one common theme, we were always too close up and often we seldom or never invite other preachers. We often think we have the best method, best style and best structure. As the world and church movement change, where once we were at the forefront of church growth have not been lagged far behind, where church have discovered more arenas God wants to add back, we were still only talking about world mission.

In fact, when i first joined Hope, it was a revolutionary thinking, Global church planting, but other churches have caught on Global missions, in fact many big churches are already doing just that, my friend's church where once was a local church have started to church plant as well

In the meantime, other churches have also added new areas into the Church. Churches have started writing songs, producing CDs, going on TV actively engaging the community through business and culture. God has always wanted us to be the head and not the tail. God wants us to claim back what belongs to God.

It would be good that we start to explore other area of God's gift- because of how we use to structure alot of our ministry. People whose gifts centres on teaching, missions and pastoral, often will prosper in the church, But not many on other areas like worship, prophetic and signs and wonders, etc.

Keep what works and throw our what doesn't, reduce turnover and build on momentum.

Serving God is not only just doin church ministry work - we can all serve God in our family, career, our relationship and community work. Allow yourself to explore because in truth not everyone is called to become missionary or church pastor if so, who is going to be the businessman, who is going to be the musican and worshpi leader who is going to play supporter .

God has designed and created each and everyone different, take this time to discover your gift.

Keep the principles as it is unchanging but methods will

Now what you might say is principle and method

For eg. God wants us to win the world - Matt 18 ( in the bible ). that is principle. Going to the streets to evangelise, become a missionary and go to another country. That is method, because it answers the How question. You can also win the world by starting a school and be a businessman and use the money you make to help the poor and share christ. You can produce an album and share your songs to the world. These are methods that can be used to help spread the word.

Because as we are all created with different gifts. if we only use one formula, then we will leave out those who are gifted in other areas.

God wants us to build churches - yes but how we do it is method.
You can send a team, you can help a struggling church, you can send a big team to one place, or send multiple teams its really up to you and these are methods.

I really hope as we move on... we will transform ourselves and be a better church

Monday, March 9, 2009

Great Hope Website

Been visiting some of the websites of the HGI churches, many of the websites was really well-done. It would be good though to have a main HGI website and links to all our HGI churches, it does help build a sense of solidarity.

I like Hope Singapore website, the sermon downloads are a good idea. I do wish we can have more of these from different HGI churches, would be good.

World Missions

Recently I heard from friends that PN is starting to do church planting. Of course that being our Hope "DNA" would undoubtedly be normal. I think if i am not wrong they are planning to do global missions as well, and restart the international churches under PN, how we shall link up i wonder. I am in no doubt if they were to start, it would be called Hope as well.

I am afraid then other Hope churches not with PN will be linked by association. If we keep the same logo, banner and mission statement. But I know HGI will do a good job, there have been some changes as well internationally as some pastors will be moving to other appointments in HGI , which is a really good trend.