I picked up this book on missional church ministry after hearing about it from a new church planter in my town. He’s planting a church that is a lot different from The Grove, in a style from which we have got to continue learning from in order to be the gospel in our post-(modern, church, God, etc.) and help people come to know Jesus in a saving way and become a disciple of Jesus.
Barefoot Church: Serving the Least in a Consumer Culture is written by Brandon Hatmaker, who is a pastor at Austin New Church down in Texas. He works in missional organizations and helps the church move into efective ministry in our day.
I liked the book because of his stories and the authentic voice through which the book is written, but I can’t help but think of the many other church leaders and church planters who’ve had similar dreams and haven’t experienced the success that Hatmaker has. It’s a complicated little thing, Christian ministry and success…
Anyways, if you are a church leader and would love to help your church move in an authentic missional direction, this little book could be a great help to you. I know that we are going to be walking through some of these ideas at The Grove, with the hope of restoring people (and all creation) to relationship with God.
Just for a spot of humor, here’s a little quote about arriving in heaven that had me just rolling because it’s so true and so beautiful:
p.164, “And I cannot imagine the thoughts that will be going through our minds as God speaks his first words to us. However, somehow I feel as if I can identify a few of the things that he won’t say.
- ‘I was really disappointed with your attendance last Sunday.’
- ‘The problem was that your lobby wasn’t big enough.’
- ‘I’m glad you never took a Sabbath. I invented those for the lazy.’
- ‘Wow, you gave waaaaaaay too much to missions.’
- ‘I wish you would have put more effort into your website. Seriously lame.’
- ‘Yup, you were right all along…poor was totally a metaphor.’“