We are always blessed by the great work that J.R. Briggs is doing, whether pastoring his church, Renew Community, in Pennsylvania or writing books like Fail and Eldership and the Mission of God. Recently, he shared his reflection on the Ecclesia Network and Truly Human Gatherings (which took place the same week in Alexandria), and we're blessed by this too:
Over the past few weeks many people have asked me, “So, how was Missio Alliance and your time with the Ecclesia Network in Alexandria?” Before I can respond, I always catch myself smiling. Immediately I am filled with gratitude for the relationships, the support structure, the stories, the prayers and the laughter with friends new and old.
And then I tell people about it…
I tell people that I love being with others where we’re absolutely sure that we are not competitors but teammates in kingdom mission in various contexts and expressions around the country.
I tell people that it’s one of the only places in my life where I can hang out with pastors for three full days and nobody is trying to impress me and where nobody asks about congregation size even though we have small churches and large churches.
I tell people that I learned, laughed, cried, met God, listened to – and was listened to – by other kingdom leaders – and how affirming that is for me and my soul. I tell them it feels like a family reunion of sorts. (It’s not just talking about being #TrulyHuman – it’s actually experiencing it firsthand).
I tell people that I love bringing leaders from our church with us to experience this tribe together – and for them to say, “Wow, I’m so glad we are a part of this network.”