Attractional Or Missional?

Yesterday was a full day at The And Conference. I’m so glad I came to this! All day long I had so many thoughts swirling through my head and emotions tugging at my heart.

The idea behind And comes from the conundrum of The Tyranny of Either-Or versus The Genius of Both-And. Is there a way for two seemingly opposing ideas to coexist, or even to enhance each other? In the case of this conference, the both-and/either-or tug is between attractional churches and missional churches.

Yesterday I listened to profound thinkers like Alan Hirsch, Rob Wegner, Hugh Halter, Matt Carter, and Dave Ferguson. Many of them shared their personal tension with the attractional/missional models. There were so many other terms that were thrown around too.

But sitting in my hotel room last night debriefing, I began to think about Jesus. He is the only One to ever balance both-and perfectly.

  • He both attracted and repelled people.
  • He both called and sent.
  • He was both in the church and in the community.
  • He was both religious and irreligious.
  • He spent time with both crowds and individuals.
  • He was both attractional and missional.

Of course, the Bible doesn’t use any of these terms—they’re all man-made—but Jesus embodied them all.

He embodied them.

He was Himself.

He is “I AM.”

That’s what I want: To be myself … be who God created me to be … be more and more conformed to the image of Jesus … be listening more attentively to the counsel of the Holy Spirit.

If I am myself, terms like missional and attractional will take care of themselves.

(By the way, I’ll be tweeting throughout the conference again today. Follow me on Twitter here, and search for the hashtag #and10.)

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