Thursday, December 07, 2006

Elders Who Feed Us Freedom

Last night Memorial experienced some amazing event! We adopted a nearby elementary school. Some of our people go in every week and read to the kids. This week the church took gifts to the three secretaries.

Lindbergh accepted an invition to perform their Holiday Program for us at Memorial Drive last night. 65 kids stood on risers and sang with occasionally wobbly choreography. Applause was everywhere! There were maybe 150 parents and neighbors....mostly from our community to join in on the cookies and drinks afterward. The place was a wonderful buzz.

No one went to the elders to get permission to do this. They gave us permission a long time ago to pursue opportunities in the kingdom. There was no elders' meeting to discuss, arrange, or gain approval. We get to try around here. Sometimes we fail. Sometimes we succeed. For the mostpart we have the room to make the effort.

To be fair there are occasions when, through discussions, there will arise an idea the elders will deem unwise and will properly impose their judgment. I say that to say they lead; they are not out of touch with us. The opposite is true. They still recall being younger and having ideas which died in the meetings.

If there was one thing I believe would inspire 90% of our church families it would be to increase the number of elders who trust their members' opinions as much as their own.

In this week's bulletin our elders will read for the first time an announcement: the women of Memorial will be having an event called WinterBlast. It's a gathering of our ladies on a January Saturday for a brunch, games, and door prizes, etc. Of course it's all right to have this. Of course the elders didn't know about it. They respect the faith of our people. We simply go to work....and the shepherds are in there helping us set up, take down, express their pride in us. WE FEED FROM THEM.

I urge other elders to move away from the board meetings and let your flock breathe freedom to minister in their many potentialed ways. Stand down from the permission givers and step into the applauding cheerers role. I marvel at what God gets done around here....and I love it!


Anonymous said...

Terry, I was truly, overwhelming blessed by the performance of our neighboring school. Many times I laughed, but more than that, I had tears in my eyes. And thesea aren't even my own kids. But yet...they are. They are kids of the kingdom and last night, I think they felt that way. I'm so happy this opportunity came up! And then I found out that we knew two of the families that were visiting last night.
I love this church so much. I love the thought of us running with great ideas that enhance the lives of others, while providing God opportunites! These opportunities are endless and they are everywhere! There was proof in that last night! :o)

Brian Mashburn said...

You are very blessed to have these good shepherds as your elders. I and our congregation get to experience the same freedom, and it is a challenging blessing. With no more excuses of "the elders won't allow that", we only have ourselves to blame when we don't get to work! May God bless all Elderships in their Shepherding.

Brian Mashburn

Terry Rush said... are such a valued part of the family fabric at Memorial. Thank you for living like/looking like you have God on the inside!

Brian.....I love your congregation. We (pulpit ministers and the brotherhood) have appropriately complained about the blatant obstruction so many elders have placed in front of their flocks. When I see these guys doing remarkable jobs I want to be in the lead cheering them on as it takes enormous courage at first to break the mold of controlling the circumstances. However, once the mold it broken I think their role is so much easier that they don't even notice how much they bless us.

You are a great light, too, Brian. Keep up the good faith!

Carrie said...

The Elders from the past to the Elders we have now, have been nothing but supportive, Prayful, and loving! When I wanted to do the Kids Praise Team, it was a YES, when I wanted to do Camp, it was a YES...the thing is, you know they pray about these things before the (YES), and that makes it so comforting to know that they pray about EVERYTHING! I have to agree we are SO BLESSED with our leadership!

Shane Coffman said...

A big AMEN to what Terry said.

I thanked Lindbergh's principal last night for the same thing. She could have put a big stop to what happened last night as well. She could have said, "No, we don't want to go perform at a church. That's too controversial. Some parents might be offended." A lot of people would use that excuse these days.

But she stepped out on a limb and said yes, and I think the blessings from that decision overflowed last night.

Stoogelover said...

I have been blessed for the past 13 years with a very permission-granting eldership.