Holy Currencies. Currency of Money: Something generally accepted as a medium of exchange, a measure of value, or as a means of payment.

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1 Holy Currencies Currency of Time and Place: Paid and volunteer time that leaders/members offer to the church/ministry. Properties from which a church/ministry operates, and other properties owned or which can be accessed by the church/ministry. Currency of Gracious Leadership: The ability to use skills, tools, models and processes to create gracious environments (Grace Margin) within which mutually respectful relationships and the discernment of the truth across differences can be built internally, among existing members, and externally, with non- members. Differences can be racial/ethnic, age, gender, sexual orientation, class, political affiliation or just church members and folks in the neighborhood. Currency of Relationship: Internal and external networks of mutually respectful connections that leaders/members of a church/ministry have. Internal connections include constructive relationships among members/leaders, area churches/ministries of the same affiliation, area denominational organizations and national and international denominational structures. External connections include constructive relationships with non- members, different racial/cultural/ethnic groups in the neighborhood, people with resources and people in need in the community, civic community leaders, ecumenical/interfaith partners, community and civic organizations, and local businesses. Currency of Truth: The ability to articulate individually and corporately the global/wholistic truth, both internally the experiences of different individuals and groups within the church/ministry and externally the experiences of different individuals and groups in the community, the neighborhood, the city or town, the nation, and the earth. Currency of Wellness: The state of being healthy physically, socially, economically, ecologically and spiritually within a church/ministry, the neighborhood, the town/city, nation or the earth, especially as the result of deliberate effort. Sustainable wellness requires regenerative and recirculatory flow of material, human, financial and natural resources. Currency of Money: Something generally accepted as a medium of exchange, a measure of value, or as a means of payment. Page 1

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5 From Money to Blessings 1. Recall an earliest time in you life when money was flowing in a way that gives blessings. It could a story or experience in which your parents, or relatives, or friends, or elders had used money in a way that develop build relationship, tell the truth, make wellness, buildup the community. i. Where were you? ii. Who was there? iii. What were you doing? iv. Where did the money involved come from? v. What blessings did the money exchange into? vi. Who or what group was enriched? vii. What long-term benefits did this create? viii. What did you learn? 2. How does this experience impact the way you use money today? i. Personally? ii. For ministry? Page 5

6 Internal Relationship Inventory Internal Relationships Name the key people involved in building these relationships Rate These Relationships: (None, weak, okay, strong) Currencies exchange: - gracious leadership - relationship - truth - time/place - money - wellness Among members Among area churches of the same affiliation With area denominational organization With national denominational structure Page 6

7 External Currency of Relationship Inventory External Relationships: With People Not Already Members of the Church Name the key people involved in building these relationships Rate these Relationships: (None, weak, okay, strong) Currencies exchange: - gracious leadership - relationship - truth - time/place - money - wellness Different Racial, Cultural and Ethnic Groups in the Neighborhood Individuals and Groups with Resources Individuals and Groups in Need Civic and Community Leaders Ecumenical/interfaith partners Local businesses Civic and Community Organizations Environment Page 7

8 Exploring Your Network of Relationships 1. As you work through the two exercises, what do you notice and wonder about: Where are your strengths? Where are your struggles? 2. If you were to increase your ministry s sustainability, a. What do you need to pay attention to? b. What adjustment would you make to increase the effectiveness of your network?: i. Internal: ii. External 3. In what ways can you assist the leaders/members of your church/ministry to increase the effectiveness of their ministry network? i. Internal: ii. External Page 8

9 Luke 10:38-42 As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord s feet listening to what he said. But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, Lord, don t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me! Martha, Martha, the Lord answered, you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her. Developing Currency of Relationship From Task Driven to Relationship-Driven Ministry A. List some of the ministries of your church community, especially the ones that involve interacting with those who are not already members of their church. B. Using the chart below, spend some time to discern which approach does each one of these ministries operated out of in the last year. Task-Driven Linear Talking Convincing Doing Instruction Giving Differences in Approaches Relationship-Driven Circler/Spiral Listening Trust-Building Connecting Story Telling Page 9

10 C. Select one of the Task-Driven ministries. Describe what this ministry will look like (with some details) if it is a Relationship-Driven ministry D. If my church community is to move toward a relationship-driven model of ministry, i. My fear is... ii. My hope is... Page 10

11 Currency of Truth Different Kinds of Truth Factual Truth Interpreted Truth Experienced Truth Divine Truth Page 11

12 Divine Truth The divine truth challenges the truth as propagated by the historically dominant group. Jesus approach to revealing the truth begins with raising the self- esteem of the powerless. We don t have the whole truth unless we listen to the stories of the powerless first. The divine truth is a global truth. The divine truth exposes the system of oppression. The divine truth then becomes a divine judgment. Ultimately, the divine truth restores the community of Christ. Page 12

13 Inventory of Your Church s Currency of Truth List Truth Events facilitated in the last year: Currencies exchange: - gracious leadership - relationship - truth - time/place - money Internal: Among church members External: For the neighborhood External: For the city/state For the environment Page 13

14 Developing Currency of Truth Create a Truth Event/Program 1. Select either an internal issue or the external issue. Create an event, or a program that bring together the powerful and the powerless for dialogue. 2. Name of the event/program: 3. Timeframe of the event/program: 4. Who are the powerful? How do you invite and prepare them to come to this event/program? 5. Who are the powerless? How do you build trust and prepare them to come to this event/program? 6. At the event/program, what will you do to make sure that the powerless get to share first and the powerful are invited to listen? Page 14

15 Currency of Wellness Observe the Sabbath day and keep it holy, as the Lord your God commanded you. Six days you shall labor and do all your work. But the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God; you shall not do any work you, or your son or your daughter, or your male or female slave, or your ox or your donkey, or any of your livestock, or the resident alien in your towns, so that your male and female slaves may rest as well as you. Remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and the Lord your God brought you out from there with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm; therefore the Lord your God commanded you to keep the Sabbath day. Deuteronomy 5:12 15 For six years you shall sow your land and gather in its yield; but the seventh year you shall let it rest and lie fallow, so that the poor of your people may eat; and what they leave the wild animals may eat. You shall do the same with your vineyard, and with your olive orchard. Exodus 23: At the end of every seven years you must cancel debts. This is how it is to be done: Every creditor shall cancel any loan they have made to a fellow Israelite. They shall not require payment from anyone among their own people, because the Lord s time for canceling debts has been proclaimed. Deuteronomy 15: 1-2 You shall count off seven weeks of years, seven times seven years, so that the period of seven weeks of years gives forty-nine years....you shall have the trumpet sounded through all your land. And you shall hallow the fiftieth year and you shall proclaim liberty throughout the land to all its inhabitants. It shall be a jubilee for you: you shall return, every one of you, to your property and everyone of you to your family. That fiftieth year shall be a jubilee for you; you shall not sow, or reap the aftergrowth, or harvest the unpruned vines. For it is a jubilee; it shall be holy to you; you shall eat only what the field itself produces. Leviticus 25:8-12 Page 15

16 Inventory of Your Church s Wellness Currency Church Leaders List Wellness/Sabbatical Activities Categorize these activities: - Spiritual Wellness - Physical Wellness - Social Wellness - Ecological Wellness - Economical Wellness Currencies exchange: - gracious leadership - relationship - truth - time/place - money Church Members Neighborhood Folks The Environment Page 16

17 Developing Currency of Wellness Create a Wellness Event 1. Review the Inventory of Your Church s Wellness Currency worksheet. a. Where are your strengths? b. Where are your weaknesses? 2. Select one area where you are lacking in wellness activities, create a wellness/sabbath event. a. What are the timeframe of this event? b. For whom is this event a Sabbath? c. On what areas of wellness is this event focused? d. At the event: i. We will... ii. We will not... Page 17

18 Currency of Leadership And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us,... full of grace and truth. (John 1:14) Jesus s leadership created a time and a place for people to: 1. Re"lect and re- evaluate their values and beliefs (the woman caught in adultery, John 8:1 11, dinner at the house of Simon the Pharisee, Luke 7:36 50), 2. Listen to the experiences of the poor, powerless and excluded (at the home of Simon the Leper in Bethany, Matthew 26:6 13) 3. Share and live the abundance (feeding of the multitudes, Matthew 14:13 21, Mark 6:31 44, Luke 9:10 17, John 6:5 15), 4. Share authority (calling his disciples friends, John 15:15, sending them out two by two, Mark 6:7) Page 18

19 Creating Grace Margin Techniques for Creating a Grace Margin 1. Negotiate for time 2. Set Parameter: state clearly what you will do and will not do with the time agreed. a. Carefully worded invitation b. Clearly stated purpose and goals at the beginning of each gathering 3. Respectful Communication Guidelines -- Begin every gathering with an agreement from participants to uphold them. 4. Include a diversity of God images through: a. Prayers b. Kaleidoscope Bible Study c. Songs d. Liturgical framing of each gathering Page 19

20 Gracious Invitation Select one of the ministry ideas generated in this workshop so far. Write an invitation using the formula below to invite church members to consider participating in this ministry. If time allows, write a second invitation to invite your target outsiders to come to this ministry. Page 20

21 How did you use your currency of time last week? 1. Using the weekly calendar below, describe as best you can how you spent your time last week. For example, going to a movie, watch TV (alone or with others), reading, walking, sleeping, working on sermon, taking care of properties, bible study group, etc. 2. Now go through the calendar again and categorize each item according to what currency was exchanged with the time especially the currencies list here. In other words, how much of your time is spent in developing, or exchanging into the following currencies: 1. Place 2. Gracious Leadership 3. Relationship 4. Truth 5. Wellness 6. Money 2. As you work through this exercise, What do you notice and wonder about? Where are your strengths? Where are your struggles? 3. If you were to increase your personal and your church/ministry s sustainability, What do you need to pay attention to? What adjustment would you make in how your spent your time? Page 21

22 How did you use your currency of time last week?! Page 22

23 Inventory of Your Church s Currency of Time and Place 1. Using the chart below, list the places/locations to which your church/ministry have access on the first column. 2. Write down the activities that take place in that location in the second column. 3. Categorize the activities according to what currencies into which they exchange. 4. As you work through this exercise, what do you notice and wonder about: Where are your strengths? Where are your struggles? 5. If you were to increase your community/ministry s sustainability, a. What do you need to pay attention to? b. What adjustment would you make in the use of the places of your church/ministry? Page 23

24 Inventory of Your Church s Currency of Time and Place? Locations Activities Time Investment Currencies exchange: - gracious leadership - relationship - truth - wellness - money Page 24

25 Inventory of Your Church s Currency of Money 1. Obtain a copy of your church/ministry budget. 2. Go through each expense item and categorize it according to the currencies that it exchanges into: (Time, Place, Gracious Leadership, Relationship, Truth and Wellness.) 3. Add up all amount of money for each currency exchange and write the amounts below: a. Time: b. Place: c. Gracious Leadership: d. Relationship: e. Truth: f. Wellness: 4. As you work through this exercise, what do you notice and wonder about? What are the strengths? What are the struggles? 5. If you were to increase your church/ministry s sustainability, What do you need to pay attention to? What adjustment would you make in how your use your money? Page 25

26 Creating a New Ministry Using the Cycle of Blessings a. Name the truth you are seeking and the wellness you are fostering in this new ministry; b. Construct a relational network that supports this ministry; c. Establish a place and time in which this ministry will take place; d. Create a wellness plan for people involved; e. Develop a leadership-training process to empower people for this ministry; f. Find initial investors to give money, time and talent to launch this ministry; g. Formulate a financial plan for ongoing financial sustainability, perhaps using GracEconomics; h. Project a timeframe when this ministry will be self-sustaining. Page 26

27 Ways to Embrace the Cycle of Blessings 2. Personal Spirituality As a leader, apply the Cycle of Blessings to your life and ministry. Do the Time Inventory exercise and explore how you have apportioned your time for the different currencies. Which currencies do you have and value, and which currencies are you lacking and in need of development? How would you adjust your thinking and what would you do in order to develop these currencies? Create a personal action plan based on this reflection. 3. Congregation Vitality Assessment Working with leaders of your church, discern which currencies are your strengths and which are your weaknesses. Do we have a balance of internal and external movements in relationship, truth, wellness and leadership? What would you do and how would you adjust your thinking in order to develop those currencies in which you are lacking? Create a six-month action plan based on this exploration. 4. Assessment of the Flow of Resources in the Wider Community Using the Cycle of Blessings, you can analyze how resources are circulating in the wider community. What are the signs of blessing flowing through your community? How can you help people in your community to acknowledge and celebrate these blessings? Where do the currencies become stagnated? How can your church take part in unclogging the blockage? How can you mobilize the currencies that your church has to restore the healthy circulation of resources? How can your church be a place where blessings flow in and out rejuvenating the wider community? 5. Change the Way Your Church Values Currencies Working with leaders of your church, review the various ways to value the various Holy Currencies. Explore which of these suggestions can be implemented to help members of your community to recognize and affirm the flowing of these currencies toward blessings internally for church members and externally for the wider community. 6. Redesign Worship You can use the Cycle of Blessings to design a liturgy. Worship begins with people taking their time to come a place. How do you use gracious leadership to enable worshipers to build stronger relationship? How does the liturgy enable participants to speak and listen to the truth through sermon, music, prayers, and other kinds of presentations? Where in the liturgy does it foster spiritual wellness? If your worship indeed provides relationship, truth and wellness, worshipers will be happy to contribute money and time to support the ministry of the church, which in part will enhance the leadership capability and maintenance and improvement of properties of your church. Page 27

28 7. Redesign Gatherings Keeping the Cycle of Blessings in mind, we can redesign an annual conference, convention, synod, assembly, or local and regional gatherings, making sure that all six currencies are flowing. Again, we start with a time and a place for these gatherings. What part of the agenda builds relationships, speaks the truth, fosters wellness, increases gracious leadership, and strengthens financial stewardship? Decide how these differently focused agenda items should flow and create an overall agenda. 8. Re-Envision an Existing Ministry You can use the Cycle of Blessings to analyze an existing ministry and see what you need to do to make it sustainable and missional. Sometimes, it is just a readjustment of the way people think about that ministry that will transform it. Because the currencies of relationship, truth and wellness are often lacking in many ministries, re-designing a ministry based on the exploration on how to develop these currencies will create a more complete Cycle of Blessings, which will make the ministry missional and sustainable. 9. Incubate a New Ministry To create a new ministry, you can start anywhere in the Cycle of Blessings and imagine how each of the currencies can flow and rejuvenate each other. At the end of the reflection, ask: What is God calling you to do? Create a ministry plan that will incorporate all the currencies of the Cycle of Blessings: a. Name the truth you are seeking and the wellness you are fostering in this new ministry; b. Construct a relational network that supports this ministry; c. Establish a place and time in which this ministry will take place; d. Create a wellness plan for people involved; e. Develop a leadership-training process to empower people for this ministry; f. Find initial investors to give money, time and talent to launch this ministry; g. Formulate a financial plan for ongoing financial sustainability, perhaps using GracEconomics; and h. Project a timeframe when this ministry will be self-sustaining. Page 28

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