I have been invited to share from the story of The Esther Project today at a national gathering of ministers from the Uniting Church. Feeling a little nervous - telling the story through the lense of sustainability when this became an unsustainable community makes me, its leader, vulnerable. However it is a story we need to tell, revealing lessons we as a church must learn if we are to enable new models of church to emerge and flourish, enriching our wider communities with nurturing communities of faith.
The full text will become a chapter in the book I am going to write - now that I have finally begun - but the nutshell I have arrived at in regards to sustainability is this:
Fresh expressions need time and money. The church will need to fund ideas and dreams, give time and resources to leaders pursuing possibilities, making space for opportunities, building relationships. Out of these relationships fresh expressions may - may - emerge.
God is always calling us beyond where we are. We have not arrived. Let us journey off our safety maps and discover God in the world.