Monday, March 20, 2017

Roots and Wings: same name with a new face

I started blogging in 2009 as a way to distill my thinking into bite-sized reads for our church. At times I asked people to bite off more than they could chew! I realize that my shorter posts are easier to digest. That said, whether it's short stories or more lengthy essays, the blog seems to have helped to give us a greater sense of cohesion and vision as a church.

While I am an idealist and love to talk about ideas, the most popular posts by far have been tributes to people who have either passed away or reached major milestones. Ideas are plentiful today. Legacy is rare. People are hungry for stories of those who have lived out their ideas with integrity.  So while I cannot promise that I won't post on ideas, I know that behind every idea, people are rightfully asking, "How's that working for you?" I'd love to hear from you about what you have found most helpful.

Though I've repented of slavishly following stats on the blog, I've been delighted to see that it is read by many people in many cities and nations beyond our church. This has resulted in new connections around the nation and nations which has been an added bonus.

So when it came time to put a fresh face on the blog, I asked Brett McCracken and Rob Scott to help me with ideas and feel. They both liked the name Roots and Wings because it spoke of our desire to be a church rooted in the Scriptures, the gospel and the sovereignty of God, yet elevated by the wind of the Holy Spirit. This will remain a passion and a focus.

However, since 2009, 'Roots and Wings' has taken on broader significance for us. It evokes an image of a church 'rooted' in the Southland. This is the geographic term for Southern California. Our church is called Southlands because we feel called to 'multiply points of light all over the Southland." By God's gracious hand we have begun to see real glimpses of that dream becoming reality.  The next ten years will see us lean into that calling with new vigor and focus, to see the light of Christ bring life to the 26 million people who live in the Southland.

While we remain 'rooted' in the Southland, we continue to live in Jesus' grand call to make disciples of all nations. This requires not just Roots but Wings! We're part of a global family of called Advance and we will continue to partner with them in planting and strengthening churches in the nations, like One Light in Chiang Rai, Thailand.

So the blog will increasingly look at what it means to be rooted in the Southland, with a heart to reach all nations for Jesus, through planting gospel-centred, Spirit-empowered, communities on mission.

Thanks to Rob Scott for applying his genius designer's touch to express a new idea behind an old name.

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