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Sunday, 12 July 2009

Missiology from Moyles

This morning's E4 at LBC was somewhat different. Two of our guys, Richard and Martin, got us to reflect on an approach to mission that had well and truly been blown out of the water by Radio 1's controversial and outspoken dj Chris Moyles. They profiled him a bit so we all knew who we were talking about and then played a 7 minute extract from his breakfast show on Monday 1 June. He spent the time telling his 7million listeners how "amazing" (if he used that word once he used it a dozen times) he found the previous morning's BBC 1 live service from a church in Peterborough. He described how captivating he found the music and also the baptisms that took place. The guy was struggling to find words to express, well, how amazing he found it all - hence the almost constant use of the word! Search YouTube under "moyles church" and you'll see what I mean. He clearly didn't understand what he was seeing but he loved it and he took 7 minutes on a Monday morning to talk about it.

Richard and Martin played Moyles and then showed the service he was talking about and it was.....amazing. They then got us to reflect on what this all tells us about mission.

What struck me most was the simple fact that never in a million years would I have thought that a charismatic church service would have been appealing to a guy like Moyles and yet......and yet he raved about it.

I was brought up on the philosophy that if you want to reach the unchurched then you'd better make sure you were seeker sensitive; which basically meant not doing anything that would appear to be weird to non christians. But it was the weirdness of this church service that got Moyles attention. It was a good weird...... an attractive weird that drew you in because, although you didn't understand it and it didn't really make a lot of sense you knew, just knew that it was real.

Make no mistake it was the authentic worship of the Father by Christ followers filled with the Spirit that had the impact. Maybe we need to focus more on the level of our desire for the Father's presence and the Son's glory than on trying to make it all "acceptable" to people crying out for an authentic experience of something - anything - so long as it's real.

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