The #ReimagineFORUM Coaching Session • Phil Miglioratti
Phil is the Curator/Coordinator of The #ReimagineFORUM @ Pray.Network and Discipleship.Network
- Pray! magazine contributor
- National Pastors’ Prayer Network founder
- City Impact Roundtable national facilitator
- Promiseland @ Willow Creek creator
- Mission America Coalition national facilitator
Phil’s vision, through the collaborative ministry of The #ReimagineFORUM, is to engage and equip 10,000 Christ-serving leaders in their Romans 12:2 journey of “being transformed by the renewing of our mind” … A reviving of the Church by a revising of the temporary wineskins that have become standardized in our ministry. Spirit-led, Scripture-fed, discernment of how to rethink-to-relink with a radically and rapidly changing culture. Redesigning Gospel ministry while preserving Gospel truths.
- Why is it important for Christian leaders to begin a journey of rethinking ministry?
Many leaders are motivated to reimagine their approach to ministry because their strategies or systems are producing very little fruit. Others realize the signs of the times point to a need for transformative change; simple upgrades are insufficient. All of us, however, need to review-revise-revive our ministry because of biblical commands that did not expire when our worship traditions were standardized or our ministry methods became our default model of how to pray together or train volunteers or share the Gospel.
These (and many other) Scriptures call every Christ-serving leader to take a journey; a pursuit that produces transformation in themselves, neighbors, and nations
- Start Right Here: Romans 12:2
- “Be transformed by the renewing of your mind”
- What if … we began applying this command, not merely to every aspect of our personal life, but to every aspect in the life and ministry of the Church?
- Pray From Here: Ephesians 2:6
- “We are seated together in the heavenly places with Christ Jesus”
- What if … we offer our prayers (whether praise to petition) as if we were actually in the presence of the “trialog,” a trinitarian conversation between Sovereign Lord, Savior, and Spirit?
- Ask This First: Matthew 7:7
- “Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you.”
- What if … we wait to ask God for ‘things’ (help, healing, hope) so that we first ask a question that seeks the leading of the Holy Spirit into the mind of Christ. Listening before listing.
- is Always: Galatians 5:6
- “All that matters is your faith, activated and expressed when you love others.”
- What if … we designed ministry (the biblical foundations and biblical formation of disciple-making, praying, evangelism, justice, communities/cities) with the one objective to “make love our aim”?
- Why will a "reimagine-journey" be difficult and potentially dangerous to the status quo?
A serious reimagine-journey has many risks. We may simply be rearranging deck chairs on a sinking ship; swapping something trendy for something traditional. We may be following a person or program that was intended as the reimagine-journey of another leader or ministry but not for us.
Another significant risk is that a pursuit of God’s calling/mission/will (the mind of Christ as revealed to us by the Holy Spirit) usually demands change, often radical change, and that can awaken a pharisaical response from those around us (spouse, staff, church members, colleagues) who have a strong reliance on the status quo.
An authentic reimagine-journey may affirm our current mission or vision or passion. But, it might not. It may be the beginning of a new calling that requires a huge step of faith.
- Agree/Disagree ~ We live in an extraordinary world: Globalization. Immigration. #BlackLivesMatter. Gender reclassification. Marriage Redefined. #MeToo. The rise of White Supremacy. Terrorism. Unpredictable Weather. The impact of the Industrial Revolution gives way to the Technological Age. . . . This a time of epic change that requires the Church to rethink how we apply biblical truth to the traditions-programs-models-systems that format everything we do.
I agree … Every generation has a unique set of challenging circumstances, but I am convinced we are living in an unprecedented “hinge of history;” a shifting of views and values that are producing stark changes in the core values of global culture, communication, and our sense of community. A 21st century ‘Roaring 20’s’ is unfolding before us.
The Church must act. Now. But the first step is to hear “Don’t just do something; stand there.”
Every leader who begins a serious reimagine-journey, brings the Church one step closer to a tipping point; the pendulum swing from what many believe is a hypocritical/judgmental/mean-spirited institution, to an authentic community of loving truth-tellers.
We certainly need to protect biblical truth but we often seem more interested in preserving tradition (decades or centuries old) or promoting quick-fix trends. Biblical truth is eternal; the ‘things’ we design or construct to contain and carry that truth in our ministries all have a shelf life. We discover the expiration date only if we keep on asking (questioning the Spirit), keep on seeking (discernment from the Spirit in prayer and Scripture), keep on knocking (until a specific door opens to a new pathway).
- What does it actually mean to "reimagine?" Please unpack the word as you understand it and the components of a reimagining process.
I do not understand the term “reimagine” as a New Age practitioner or a therapist does.
To me, to reimagine means to:
- “Imagine again in a different way” – could mean, “pray first…”
- “Creative problem solving; change a perception; rethink a new way of an old idea”
- Review (assess by the leading of the Spirit; a collective experience of the group or team or membership), then revise (systems, programs, applications), then revive (move forward with the leading and in the power of the Spirit of God).
- “Never doubt God’s mighty power to work in you and accomplish all this. He will achieve infinitely more than your greatest request, your most unbelievable dream, and exceed your wildest imagination! He will outdo them all, for his miraculous power constantly energizes you.” Ephesians 3:20
I fear my refusal to reimagine (reaching for the mind of Christ) much more than my fear of being deceived (by myself or the Enemy) with an ungodly counterfeit.
- What roadblocks or resistance, barriers and boundaries, inhibit or prevent leaders from pursuing a discernment-assessment when they commence a journey to reimagine ministry?
Assuming beneficial models/modes from the past are eternal; untouchable.
-Inability to wait; ask, be silent-listen-hear, then obey.
-Unwillingness to be coached by the Holy Spirit.
-Flying solo; my plan, my way.
-Relying on successful leaders/models while not making oneself accountable to a community (cohort group, leadership team, churchwide prayer and deliberation).
-Better at listing (petitions) than listening (perceiving by the Spirit God’s Word and will).
- "Where do I begin? Where do you recommend a leader looks first to ensure they commence a truly Spirit-led, Scripture-fed journey?
>Seek first his kingdom (God’s righteous reign and rule; God’s purposes and priorities). The Spirit may lead you through a process of:
~Conviction: misplaced trust
~Contrition: genuine sorrow
~Confession: “to say the same thing” by agreeing with God’s diagnosis
>Surrender to a journey of discovery that is •Spirit-led, (“Keep on being filled with the Spirit” Ephesians 5:18) •Scripture-fed (foundational truth), •Worship-bred (praise and honor to God is the beginning, middle, and ultimate goal of every aspect of ministry), •Corporate-said (God’s will is spoken through Spirit-led people, cohorts in our faith community), •Community-spread (reimagining begins with the Church but flows out into neighborhoods and unto the nations).
>Set a daily prayer format:
~Ask … questions of the Coach who will guide your journey (list needs another time)
~Seek … discernment; be still, search Scripture,
~Knock … when the Spirit gives you clear direction, knock (pray boldly and with
confidence),then act faithfully by serving others with kindness and justice
>Share your journey with others who are also pursuing a Spirit-led path to a transformed perspective on ministry. Scout-out cohorts who can give you wise-counsel.
- Who are the thought leaders the Holy Spirit is using to help the Church reimagine?
You will find a diverse selection of Thought Leaders and Ministry Organizations on:
- The ReimagineFORUM @ Pray.Network
- The ReimagineFORUM @ Discipleship.Network
- The ReimagineFORUM Bulletin (a free, periodic, listing of new links to new thought and best practices) … Subscribe here>>>
- How does your ministry help Christian leaders equip those they serve to begin their reimagine-journey?
Our mission is to invite/challenge Christ-serving leaders to embark on a Spirit-led journey to “be transformed by the renewing of their mind.” We do not present a programmed set of steps, rather, as the Spirit leads, we encourage “reimagineers” to explore our Archives-Blogs-Categories-Discussions as they pursue their journey:
- Discussions (articles/commentaries) on Disciple-making, Evangelism, Cities, Justice, more) >>>
- Discussions on the 6 Dimensions of Reimagining Prayer >>>
- #ReimagineDISCIPLESHIP - Tweeted quotes, links, resources >>>
- #ReimaginePRAYER Tweets >>>
- Our Directory of Ministry Organizations @ Network and @ Pray.Network and our Index of Prayer-Related Newsletters
- #ReimaginePRAYER Blogroll >>>
- #ReimagineDISCIPLESHIP Blogroll >>>
- The #ReimagineFORUM on Facebook >>>
- More coaching insights to share? Questions we must pursue?
Everything is changing. To blindly embrace every new thought is dangerous but to stubbornly ignore or reject every new shift in culture is foolish.
>Ask questions before giving answers
>Submit traditions (whether years old or set in ancient times) to the review of the Holy
Spirit and be open to being revived by becoming revised.
>Facilitate more. You do not always have to lead or direct; give the Holy Spirit room to
lead through others or in unexpected ways. Soft planning.
>Facilitate from the front (instructions for interaction), the side (listen to conversations
and comments), the back (ask questions that point the conversation back to Jesus, our
- Please lead us in a prayer that sets us onto a reimagining journey . . .
Jesus, we present this prayer in your name, your authority, asking for a fresh filling of your Holy Spirit that produces a deep-rooted assessment with the discernment to pursue the path you have for us … and we petition you for the faith to take the next step. To listen with others and to launch out with others who also seek the mind of Christ for every aspect-level-application of ministry.
Build your Church. Not for us but with us and through us.