WHAT’S IN A NAME?
A name serves as more than a mere label, nor is it only a phonetic representation of something or someone. A name constitutes identity, and hence all that goes along with that.
Consider, if you will, just the labels we put on places. When we say we live in a city, there are certain connotations that come with saying that. We would all picture some similar things: buildings, roads, high rises, compactness, traffic. If you say you grew up in the country, that is something entirely different, for images of rolling hills, dirt roads, wild animals, and houses with lots of land spring up.
A name, however gives specificity to both locales. If I told you I was from Boston (I am), the identity that Bostonians have is quite specific. Some of these: history; rush hour actually being 24/7; Fenway Park; Dunks; streets with several names for the same winding street; the Marathon: the T; an alphabet with no “R”; and recently, Malcolm Butler.
Here at Life, we’ve been using a name that, while is generally true, it is not specific enough. When you think of a group of people, all kinds of things pop into your mind, many of which are largely based on experience. All of these things are true for you, but can simultaneously be entirely at odds with someone else’s definition of a group. We’re talking about Life Groups.
To that end, we are going to change the name to something more specific, something more defined, something more true to everyone that is a part of one. Life Groups–who, on their own, can just give numerous meanings because of the two words used in the name!–are going to now be called Missional Communities. If you’ve not yet had the opportunity to join a family of these missionary servants that gather and serve and do life together, you just may want to consider it now. You can get more info by signing up here for one of our missional community intro dinners.
Missional communities give us insight into both what they do and who they are. Based on proximity, a missional community is a group of people who live life together for the purpose of gospel transformation in themselves and their community–through communion, community, and celebration. They are missional, in that the intent is not to come and see, but rather to go and serve. They are filled with missionary servants who are trying to make disciples. They’re a family on mission, serving and loving one another and, in turn, the people and communities to which they are called.
So what’s in a name? Everything, actually. Mine’s Dave. What’s yours?