Now the discipleship pastor at National Community Church in Washington, D.C., Heather Zempel was a consultant at an environmental engineering firm and also a policy advisor in the United States Senate. We were fortunate to have Heather facilitate one of the breakouts at Orange ’10. Hear from Amy Dolan on some of the things she took away…
I chose Heather’s breakout because I had heard phenomenal things about her and of course, I am always trying to figure out how to live more truthfully in community.
–There’s always a connection between mess and transformation, mess is the environment in which the greatest transformation usually occurs.
–Types of messes: the sin mess (someone in community sins), the relational mess (what happens when people are naturally in relationship together) and the life mess (when tragedy strikes the group)
–What to do when a mess happens in community:
1. Acknowledge the mess: What is your posture? Will you be an inspector (someone who points out the areas of mess) or an engineer (someone who creates a better environment)? Don’t just ignore the mess, acknowledge it!
2. Identify: What type of mess are you dealing with (sin, relational, life)?
3. Have the right perspective: mess isn’t the end, it usually is the beginning of something great
4. Ask good questions: there is usually a gap between the information that we know and the reality of the situation. Ask questions in order to understand the current reality
5. Gain great counsel: talk to the right people who can help guide you through the messy process.
6. Communicate the biblical goal of the mess: for growth to occur and for God to glorified.
7. Be willing to fight through the mess: complete the process and fight for community and transformation.
We have all been confronted with these “messes.” Have you been through a mess? What were the steps you took to get to a place of transformation? What was the outcome?