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The spot for the good news, the good word, the quick reports of the many, many wonderful news items I hear all the time and want to share with the rest of you. Expect to find the good news when you come to check out "what’s the good word?"

Friday, November 27, 2009

Context

Now there is an interesting word. Context refers to the circumstances in which an event occurs. It is the setting in which something is said or done, and it really does matter.

“Context is everything!” That is a phrase one may hear from time to time. It suggests that one cannot overestimate the importance of our circumstance. I heard this phrase the other day in the midst of a discussion by our CPI pastors. The conversation was on the subject of the mission of a congregation.

Then there is the matter of internal context versus external context. In a congregation, for instance, the internal context might be all about the relationship between church participants, whether supportive or antagonistic, harmonious or tense. External context is about what is happening in the community where the church is located. I find this external context very intriguing, partly because we often ignore it so completely!

What is happening in your external context; the community where your congregation is located? What is occurring in the lives and circumstances of the families who live there? Is the recession impacting them in a serious way? What circumstances are changing in the neighbourhood? Are there needs that the church can and should respond to?

Context matters. External context matters because that is where our mission is.

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