I am not among those who think that the word “missional” has outlived its usefulness. In fact, I submit that such a disposition only serves to indicate that we’re not even close to mining out its significance. As soon as the majority of Christians (not pastors and theologians… Christians) share a fundamental understanding of the character of God and Church as missionary, we can drop it. Till then, you’ll find me with shoulder to shoulder with other brothers and sisters seeking to leverage the word and the questions it evokes toward that end.
Consciously or not, those who have any level of investment in the “missional conversation,” owe a debt of gratitude to Darrell Guder. On top of his other books and articles, the book he edited, Missional Church: A Vision for the Sending of the Church in North America, was a watershed text in terms of helping to begin recasting theology and ecclesiology in missiological light.
Though he hasn’t written prolifically in the “missional” arena since the publication of this volume in 1998, virtually everything else that has been put forth in this field stands on the shoulders of this book.
All this to say, when Darrell Guder does step forth to offer something, that it’s worth a listen would be an enormous understatement. That being the case, I wanted to draw some attention to the two videos below. These are from the Warren Lecture Series at The University of Dubuque Seminary from last fall.
I wish I had more time to outline the lectures and make specific reflections. However, I have watched both twice so if you take the time to view them and want to dialogue in the comment section about anything you pick up, I’d love to!