Feedback from a few previous participants on ReSource
I stumbled across the ReSource course via Jonny Baker’s blog, and was encouraged by my church’s leadership team to give it a go. I can’t tell you how many training weekends and conferences I’ve been sent on that have either left me cold or very frustrated, so I wasn’t all that excited about this one. It turns out though that ReSource was just the right course at just the right time! ReSource is an excellent mix of insightful and engaging teaching, passionate storytelling, relaxed conversation, inspiring visits to a variety of projects and communities, and the space to develop friendships and connect with God. In short, unlike all the other courses I’d been on, ReSource didn’t just talk about the emerging church, it demonstrated it. ReSource answered many of the questions that I had been struggling with, and left me with many questions I hadn’t previously been asking! But the main thing I took away was the feeling that I wasn’t alone, that there are many other people out there on a similar journey. That gave me a great deal of confidence, and I finished the course feeling like I had permission to experiment, take risks, and follow the Spirit wherever he might lead. So I’m quite sure that ReSource will have a profound and ongoing impact on the development of the work I’m doing with un-churched young adults in my local community.
WARNING: THIS COURSE IS GOING TO TURN YOUR LIFE POSITIVELY UPSIDE DOWN! If you like what you do currently, if you are comfortable utilising the gifts that God has given you and if you are easily shocked then DON’T do this course! But if you want to be transformed more and more into His image, then I dare you to take part in ReSource. God has given me a bar ministry in Birmingham (probably because at one time in my life I could drink anyone under the table!). I started off simply witnessing to not-yets and was desperate to bring them to church! I was surprised to learn that they weren’t interested. But they were happy for me to discuss what Jesus could do for them right there in the bar. This frustrated me but not for long… I accidentally came across a ReSource leaflet in Greenbelt and casually enquired. The course fee could buy me a house in Bangladesh! So I thought… ahh never mind. But Beth told me about the Bursary. We kicked off in Sheffield with the “Missio Dei” and this was the beginning of my life being turned upside down! This was God’s Mission not mine. Furthermore, I realised I could do God’s Mission in the bar with the information that I had processed on this course. Finally the ministry had some structure and my own church were backing me all the way.
At the time I was on the ReSource course, I was involved in planting a youth / student congregation within an existing Anglican church, (St Saviours, Guildford), and we were seeing about 150 students and young adults coming to our main gatherings every Sunday afternoon, and meeting in cell groups during the week. For me, being on ReSource was really helpful on a number of different levels. I benefited loads, from the teaching and input we received, which covered a broad range of formats, styles, and subjects. Some of the teaching was really down-to-earth and practical, with real-life examples, while other sessions were visionary and inspirational, yet nevertheless connected with the church and the world as they currently are. All the sessions were conducted by practioners, people doing the stuff, on the ground, and as such their examples, and the other stories and case studies which they used to illustrate their teaching, were particularly helpful in opening my eyes to what could be, and to the hope there really is for the church of the future, when we apply our God-given freedom and creativity to the process of church planting and developing and designing new expressions of church. Perhaps most significantly, ReSource gave the opportunity to rub shoulders with, and talk at length with older, wiser, more-experienced leaders, visionaries, pioneers, and church planters really made a huge difference for me personally. While I am no longer involved in the project I was involved in while I was on the ReSource course, the inspiration, the vision and the wisdom I gleaned from spending time with the individual members of the team running ReSource truly served to further shape my own sense of calling and future direction, particularly in terms of renewal and church planting within the established church in Europe.
Well it was a really good course. It helped me realise that the church really is in dire straights because so much of the radical ideas are coming from the younger leaders who currently don’t have the training/skills/clout/financial backing to bring their dreams into reality. That’s where ReSource comes in. I feel like if God gives me a vision now I’ve got the basic strategy tools as well as relationships with wise old heads to go for it. But more importantly the knowledge that if I don’t do it then probably no one in the institutional churches will.