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Confessions of a Reformission Rev. (Leadership Network Innovation Series)

Mark Driscoll
Confessions of a Reformission Rev. (Leadership Network Innovation Series)
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Confessions of a Reformission Rev. (Leadership Network Innovation Series)

Mark Driscoll

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This is the story of the birth and growth of Seattle's innovative Mars Hill Church, one of America's fastest growing churches located in one of America's toughest mission fields. It's also the story of the growth of a pastor, the mistakes he's made along the way, and God's grace and work in spite of those mistakes.

Mark Driscoll's emerging, missional church took a rocky road from its start in a hot, upstairs youth room with gold shag carpet to its current weekly attendance of thousands. With engaging humor, humility, and candor, Driscoll shares the failures, frustrations, and just plain messiness of trying to build a church that is faithful to the gospel of Christ in a highly post-Christian culture. In the telling, he's not afraid to skewer some sacred cows of traditional, contemporary, and emerging churches.

Each chapter discusses not only the hard lessons learned but also the principles and practices that worked and that can inform your church's ministry, no matter its present size. The book includes discussion questions and appendix resources.

"After reading a book like this, you can never go back to being an inwardly focused church without a mission. Even if you disagree with Mark about some of the things he says, you cannot help but be convicted to the inner core about what it means to have a heart for those who don't know Jesus."
Dan Kimball, author,The Emerging Church

" will make you laugh, cry, and get mad school you, shape you, and mold you into the right kind of priorities to lead the church in today's messy world."
late Robert Webber, Northern Seminary

- Publisher Confessions of a Reformission Rev. Copyright 2006 by Mark Driscoll Requests for information should be addressed to: Zondervan, Grand Rapids, Michigan 49530 Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Driscoll, Mark. Confessions of a reformission rev. : hard lessons from an emerging missional church / Mark Driscoll. p. cm. - (The leadership network innovation series) Includes bibliographical references. ISBN-13: 978-0-310-27016-4 ISBN-10: 0-310-27016-2 1. Driscoll, Mark, 1970 - 2. Evangelists - United States - Biography. 3. Mars Hill Church (Seattle, Wash.) - History. I. Title. II. Series. BV3785.D75A3 2006 280'.4 - dc22 2005032306 All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible: New International Version. NIV. Copyright 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved. The website addresses recommended throughout this book are offered as a resource to you. These websites are not intended in any way to be or imply an endorsement on the part of Zondervan, nor do we vouch for their content for the life of this book. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means - electronic, mechanical, photocopy, recording, or any other - except for brief quotations in printed reviews, without the prior permission of the publisher. Photography by Thomas James Hurst Interior design by Beth Shagene Printed in the United States of America 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 - 18 17 16 15 14 13 12 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 We want to hear from you. Please send your comments about this book to us in care of zreview@zondervan.com. Thank you. I was not a Christian when I came to the church. Today I am a pastor. God saved me while I was living with my lesbian mom and my dad was in prison for murder. I am a founding pastor. Jesus, Our Offering Was137 and I Want to Use It to Buy Bullets The upstairs room at the fundamentalist church was so hot that everyone was sweating like Mike Tyson in a spelling bee.1 During one service, a pregnant lady simply passed out and fell off her chair. This would not have been so traumatic if I were trying to plant one of those shake-and-bake, holy-roller churches where I smacked people on the nugget in Jesus' name so they could lie on the floor and twitch like a freshly caught trout on a dock and call it the work of the Holy Ghost. It was the first half of 1996 and I was twenty-five years of age chronologically, six years of age spiritually, and trying to gather enough people to launch Mars Hill Church in the city of Seattle. About ten to twenty people a week were showing up for our Sunday service, which had outgrown the living room of my rental home and was now being held in one of those epically awful youth rooms, complete with golden shag carpet on the floor and Christian rock posters on the wall for the poor kids forced to ride the short bus of Christian culture. Our weekly service would start sometime around 6:00 p.m., whenever the college students and indie rockers would show up, because it was apparently very difficult to get up by the crack of dinner. Fortunately, the room was free, which was nearly more than we could afford. I had spent the previous two years as the college ministry intern plankton at the bottom of the food chain at a multiracial mega0 church and had used the youth room to run a college group in Seattle. College ministry soon started to feel like hanging out with an ex-girlfriend, so I hit the eject button because life-stage ministry was a vocational dead end. What my college students needed was to mentor

- Publisher
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About "Confessions of a Reformission Rev. (Leadership Network Innovation Series)"

This is the story of the birth and growth of Seattle's innovative Mars Hill Church, one of America's fastest growing churches located in one of America's toughest mission fields. It's also the story of the growth of a pastor, the mistakes he's made along the way, and God's grace and work in spite of those mistakes.

Mark Driscoll's emerging, missional church took a rocky road from its start in a hot, upstairs youth room with gold shag carpet to its current weekly attendance of thousands. With engaging humor, humility, and candor, Driscoll shares the failures, frustrations, and just plain messiness of trying to build a church that is faithful to the gospel of Christ in a highly post-Christian culture. In the telling, he's not afraid to skewer some sacred cows of traditional, contemporary, and emerging churches.

Each chapter discusses not only the hard lessons learned but also the principles and practices that worked and that can inform your church's ministry, no matter its present size. The book includes discussion questions and appendix resources.

"After reading a book like this, you can never go back to being an inwardly focused church without a mission. Even if you disagree with Mark about some of the things he says, you cannot help but be convicted to the inner core about what it means to have a heart for those who don't know Jesus."
Dan Kimball, author,The Emerging Church

" will make you laugh, cry, and get mad school you, shape you, and mold you into the right kind of priorities to lead the church in today's messy world."
late Robert Webber, Northern Seminary

- Publisher

Confessions of a Reformission Rev. Copyright 2006 by Mark Driscoll Requests for information should be addressed to: Zondervan, Grand Rapids, Michigan 49530 Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Driscoll, Mark. Confessions of a reformission rev. : hard lessons from an emerging missional church / Mark Driscoll. p. cm. - (The leadership network innovation series) Includes bibliographical references. ISBN-13: 978-0-310-27016-4 ISBN-10: 0-310-27016-2 1. Driscoll, Mark, 1970 - 2. Evangelists - United States - Biography. 3. Mars Hill Church (Seattle, Wash.) - History. I. Title. II. Series. BV3785.D75A3 2006 280'.4 - dc22 2005032306 All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible: New International Version. NIV. Copyright 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved. The website addresses recommended throughout this book are offered as a resource to you. These websites are not intended in any way to be or imply an endorsement on the part of Zondervan, nor do we vouch for their content for the life of this book. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means - electronic, mechanical, photocopy, recording, or any other - except for brief quotations in printed reviews, without the prior permission of the publisher. Photography by Thomas James Hurst Interior design by Beth Shagene Printed in the United States of America 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 - 18 17 16 15 14 13 12 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 We want to hear from you. Please send your comments about this book to us in care of zreview@zondervan.com. Thank you. I was not a Christian when I came to the church. Today I am a pastor. God saved me while I was living with my lesbian mom and my dad was in prison for murder. I am a founding pastor. Jesus, Our Offering Was137 and I Want to Use It to Buy Bullets The upstairs room at the fundamentalist church was so hot that everyone was sweating like Mike Tyson in a spelling bee.1 During one service, a pregnant lady simply passed out and fell off her chair. This would not have been so traumatic if I were trying to plant one of those shake-and-bake, holy-roller churches where I smacked people on the nugget in Jesus' name so they could lie on the floor and twitch like a freshly caught trout on a dock and call it the work of the Holy Ghost. It was the first half of 1996 and I was twenty-five years of age chronologically, six years of age spiritually, and trying to gather enough people to launch Mars Hill Church in the city of Seattle. About ten to twenty people a week were showing up for our Sunday service, which had outgrown the living room of my rental home and was now being held in one of those epically awful youth rooms, complete with golden shag carpet on the floor and Christian rock posters on the wall for the poor kids forced to ride the short bus of Christian culture. Our weekly service would start sometime around 6:00 p.m., whenever the college students and indie rockers would show up, because it was apparently very difficult to get up by the crack of dinner. Fortunately, the room was free, which was nearly more than we could afford. I had spent the previous two years as the college ministry intern plankton at the bottom of the food chain at a multiracial mega0 church and had used the youth room to run a college group in Seattle. College ministry soon started to feel like hanging out with an ex-girlfriend, so I hit the eject button because life-stage ministry was a vocational dead end. What my college students needed was to mentor
- Publisher

Meet the Author

Mark Driscoll

Pastor Mark Driscoll founded Mars Hill Church in Seattle in the fall of 1996, which has grown to over 6,000 people in one of America's least churched cities. He co-founded and is president of the Acts 29 Church Planting Network, which has planted over one hundred churches in the U.S. and internationally.

The Resurgence Missional Theology Cooperative Outreach magazine has recognized Mars Hill Church as the ninth most innovative and fifteenth fastest-growing church in America. His writing includes the books The Radical Reformission: Reaching Out Without Selling Out, Confessions of a Reformission Rev.: Hard Lessons from an Emerging Missional Church. He also contributed to the book Listening to the Beliefs of Emerging Churches. His most recent publications are Vintage Jesus: Timeless Answers to Timely Questions and Death by Love: Letters from the Cross.
-Editorial Review.

Table Of Contents

  • Contents
  • Acknowledgments 7
  • Prelude 9
  • 0. Ten Curious Questions 13
  • 1. Jesus, Our Offering Was $137 And I Want To Use It To Buy Bullets 37
  • 0 -- 45 People
  • 2. Jesus, If Anyone Else Calls My House,
  • I May Be Seeing You Real Soon 57
  • 45 -- 75 People
  • 3. Jesus, Satan Showed Up And I Can't Find My Cup 73
  • 75 -- 150 People
  • 4. Jesus, Could You Please Rapture The Charismaniac Lady
  • Who Brings Her Tambourine To Church? 91
  • 150 -- 350 People
  • 5. Jesus, Why Am I Getting Fatter And Meaner? 115
  • 350 -- 1,000 People
  • 6. Jesus, Today We Voted To Take A Jackhammer To Your Big Church 139
  • 1,000 -- 4,000 People
  • 7. Jesus, We're Loading Our Squirt Guns To Charge Hell Again 163
  • 4,000 -- 10,000 People
  • Appendix 1 --- The Junk Drawer: Answers To Common Questions 188
  • Appendix 2 --- Distinctives Of Larger Churches 195
  • Notes 198

Excerpt

Excerpt from: Confessions of a Reformission Rev. (Leadership Network Innovation Series)

Confessions of a Reformission Rev. I was not a Christian when I came to the church. Today I am a pastor. God saved me while I was living with my lesbian mom and my dad was in prison for murder. I am a founding pastor. Jesus, Our Offering Was $137 and I Want to Use It to Buy Bullets The upstairs room at the fundamentalist church was so hot that everyone was sweating like Mike Tyson in a spelling bee.1 During one service, a pregnant lady simply passed out and fell off her chair. This would not have been so traumatic if I were trying to plant one of those shake-and-bake, holy-roller churches where I smacked people on the nugget in Jesus' name so they could lie on the floor and twitch like a freshly caught trout on a dock and call it the work of the Holy Ghost. It was the first half of 1996 and I was twenty-five years of age chronologically, six years of age spiritually, and trying to gather enough people to launch Mars Hill Church in the city of Seattle. About ten to twenty people a week were showing up for our Sunday service, which had outgrown the living room of my rental home and was now being held in one of those epically awful youth rooms, complete with golden shag carpet on the floor and Christian rock posters on the wall for the poor kids forced to ride the short bus of Christian culture. Our weekly service would start sometime around 6:00 p.m., whenever the college students and indie rockers would show up, because it was apparently very difficult to get up by the crack of dinner. Fortunately, the room was free, which was nearly more than we could afford. I had spent the previous two years as the college ministry intern plankton at the bottom of the food chain at a multiracial mega0 church and had used the youth room to run a college group in Seattle. College ministry soon started to feel like hanging out with an ex-girlfriend, so I hit the eject button because life-stage ministry was a vocational dead end. What my college students needed was to mentor high school students and hang out with singles who had phased from college into the work world and married couples who had learned what kind of person to be and to marry to make a family work. What they did not need was to hang out with the same immature yahoos they spent all of their time playing 'pull my finger' with anyway and going to a free event that was like day care for twenty-one-year-old hormonally enraged porn addicts and video-game aficionados trying to stretch junior high into the retirement years. So I decided to start a church, for three reasons. First, I hated going to church and wanted one I liked, so I thought I would just start my own. Second, God had spoken to me in one of those weird charismatic moments and told me to start a church. Third, I am scared of God and try to do what he says. My wife, Grace, and I did not yet have any children, were both working jobs to make ends meet, and spent all our free time changing diapers on our baby church in its infancy phase.2 Our church was a dysfunctional small group of Christian college kids and chain-smoking indie rockers who all shared the clueless look of a wide-eyed basset hound that just heard a high-pitched whistle. Infancy is the season of dreaming and envisioning the future, gathering people, raising money, and making plans. The ministry at this stage exists only in the mind of the leader, who seeks to effectively communicate the vision and compel people to help make it a reality. In the infancy phase, the church and the leader are one and the same because the leader is essentially the only person holding the church together and doing most of the work. In retrospect, our church services were, quite frankly, painful. My preaching was like a combination of boring systematic theology and uninspiring motivational talk from a cranky junior high gym teacher. Our rotating cast of worship leader tryouts ranged from screaming punk rockers --- to this day, I have no idea why they were so dramatically depressed --- to the kind of happy-clappy Christian praise musicians that you would expect to find playing on a karaoke machine at a Christian homeschool co-op reunion for kids whose moms made their clothes. Our sound system included speakers from a home stereo that were muddy and faint, except when pumping out feedback, of course, since we could not afford real speakers. We used a moody overhead projector for worship that another church had thrown out because it only worked when it felt like it. If I were Hindu, I would guess that the projector was a junior high kid or a union laborer in a former life. In my imagination, however, I saw an entirely different church, one that did not have a beat-up old couch or a foosball table in the sanctuary. I envisioned a large church that hosted concerts for non- Christian bands and fans on a phat sound system, embraced the arts, trained young men to be godly husbands and fathers, planted other churches, and led people to work with Jesus Christ as missionaries to our city. Sadly, that church only existed in my mind, and the hard part was figuring out how to get my vision into the minds of other people so that together we could build the church God had put in my imagination. I started to wrestle with some very basic questions that, although I had read widely, I had apparently not connected in a practical way for ministry. These questions continue to drive our ministry so that it remains missional, and I believe they are vitally important for every Christian and Christian leader to continually ask because they keep the person and mission of Jesus as the most important factor in the church and Christian life.3 The Missional Ministry Matrix Priority 1: Christology --- Who is Jesus, what has he accomplished, and what has he sent us to do? Since our little church was meeting in the evening, I spent a lot of time visiting other churches in our area on Sunday mornings to see how things were going, why they were succeeding or failing, and what kinds of people were going to various churches. I can honestly say that visiting many churches was worse than being a vegetarian chef employed at a steak house. 4. Ministry How does Jesus want me to help serve his mission in our culture through my church? 1. Christology Who is Jesus, what has he accomplished, and what has he sent us to do? 2. Ecclesiology How does the Bible tell us to structure our church leadership so that our church can most effectively be God's missionary to our culture? 3. Missiology How can we most effectively expand God's kingdom where we are sent?

Customer Reviews For "Confessions of a Reformission Rev. (Leadership Network Innovation Series)"

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Driscoll's Confession
4 stars By ampers, Aug 22 2013
Driscoll explains and justifies his church's mission, the elder structure, church's membership and the service format. This may sounds like a dry book, but Driscoll is funny. Some people may think he crosses the line in good taste sometimes, but I enjoyed his writing style. He has many funny stories to tell about people in his church and how he reacts to some of them. 

Driscoll doesn't paint himself as a great leader who started a successful church and freely mentions that he stole some old sound equipment from another church, that there offices at one stage was using stolen electricity and that his 9pm service on a uni campus was a dumb idea.

Being the teacher that Driscoll is, he has added some reflection questions for you to ask about your church at the end of each chapter. They challenged me to think about training for men and what my church's mission is and how I can help with that. So if you want a good laugh, or want to learn about this Driscoll guy that some people can't stop talking about or are thinking about restructuring or planting a church, or if your church is growing, then you might want to add this book to your reading list.
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Good Medicine
5 stars By Mark Tapping, Jun 04 2010
Courage is rare these days, but this young (at the time) church planter had courage spilling over. If you don't cry tears of laughter, you are more offensive then the stories you will read. Driscoll refuses to play religion, he believes Jesus and his Word, and expects Christians to as well... that's what makes it so funny - when an unsuspecting 'semi-Christian' decides to walk across Driscolls path... all '?' breaks loose. Driscoll is polarizing, but forget if you like him or not, anyone who is half human can enjoy and learn from this book. 

WARNING: Suspect courage to enter you by osmosis... look out world - here you come!
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Product Details

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Product Details
  • Catalogue Code 241840
  • Product Code 0310270162
  • EAN 9780310270164
  • UPC 025986270162
  • Pages 208
  • Department Academic
  • Category Church
  • Sub-Category Church Growth
  • Publisher Zondervan
  • Publication Date Apr 2006
  • Sales Rank #22547
  • Dimensions 203 x 133 x 12 mm
  • Weight 0.204kg

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