Tuesday, May 20, 2008

reflections from Soma

Craig and I returned in the end of last week from Soma school in Tacoma, WA.
It was a great time. Definitely very stretching.
There were 11 international guys attending Soma School (+ around 10 americans)

Most lasting impression on me was left by Jeff Vanderstelt and his talks about the Gospel, what is church, and the identities of church/christian. It was specially powerful to me cause trying to understand the Gospel has been an area where God has working in my heart the most. I am convinced that the understanding of Gospel (and the full gospel) has to be the foundation of everything that we do, and everything we are.
I am still trying to process some of the things Jeff said about the gospel. For example the full gospel (means+purpose):
Means of Salvation (Gospel power): God-Sin-Jesus-Faith not works
Purpose of Salvation (Gospel story): Creation-Fall-Redemtion-Restoration

It was great to see how their church model worked. Instead of "come to us" (attractional model) they are definitely hard-core "lets go out to them" (missional model). They are really gospel based. people in their communities really get that the church is the people. And it was also interesting to observe their dialogical story-based teaching style. People in Soma really know the Story (their term for the bible, more specifically for the redemptive arc of bible stories).

Missional communities (small groups) are really on mission, that can be the specific neighborhood or target-group specific mission. Besides that very many people had their own personal mission projects. That was really great to see.

We are starting to process everything that we heard during that week to see what can we learn from it for our local context.

Seattle skyline

Appart from everything I learned there, it was hard to be away from Anna and Emma. But I have to tell you, NW seems to be a great place to go back to. I love the nature there. Totally my type! Maybe one day I can go riding the bikes in the mountains with my family there

Sunday, May 4, 2008


We just returned from spending a week with Josiah Venture family in Malenovice, Cz. It was a refreshing and a stimulating time. Starting with JV council meetings where we concentrated on what is needed in different countries to double the fruit in the next 3 years.
The theme for this years spring conference was spiritual warfare. So often we forget that we are soldiers in the battle field filled with unexpected attacks. Instead we have the mentality of retired bum who has got a free ticket to heaven and doesn't know what to do with his time.
JV council members

Emma loves two things above all other:
1. Animals (furry and moving)
2. Babies (not so furry but also moving)
She went hysterical in the conference when she saw another small kid.

We got back today evening.
At 3am i will catch a bus to Tallinn to fly to Seattle, USA. Craig and I will spend a week and couple of days in Soma school (church planters school that Acts29 network Soma school is organizing). I am really looking forward to that time. It will be great. But at the same time I really would want to go right now since I see that there are many strategic things that would need my attention here. And i dont want to leave Emma and Anna behind.

You can be praying for all the travels and that the time there would bear kingdom fruit in the years to come in Estonia.

These are some pictures from the JV spring conference