Minggu, 30 Desember 2007


Dear Church,I spent a lot of years of my life going to Presbytery Meetings (the monthly meetings of the leaders of Presbyterian churches in a geographical area). Open with prayer."Motion to approve the agenda. Is there a second?"Robert's Rules of Order. Moderator. Stated Clerk. Committee Chairmen (or Chairpersons).Discussions/Debates. Check the Book of Order. (Big book, other than the Bible, that tells how to do everything. Lots of small print.)Discuss the Book of Order.Revise the Book of Order.Committees. Committee Meetings.Committee Reports. Borrrrring.Close in Prayer.If you thought this was fun, you could go to General Assembly. This is one step up (or down?) from Presbytery. It's the national meeting of the leaders of all the Presbyteries where even more Committee Chairmen (Chairpersons) give even more Committee Reports.But, if the church is primarily an organization (maximum structure, squeeze the relationships where you can), you have to run it like an organization (the religious word for an organization of related churches is "denomination"). You need Robert's Rules of Order and committees.However, if the church is primarily an organism (maximum relationship, minimum structure), what does it look like?-The individual church looks like an extended family often called a house church-A group of related house churches is a network. (Network seems to be the term of choice so far.)-Beyond that, there seem to be developing "networks of networks". (Anyone have a name for this yet? Family reunion?)Denominations are not necessarily bad or evil. God has used them and will continue to use them. However, there is a new (old) "life form" emerging. This "life form" (we'll call it a "network" for now) has a minimal amount of structure (notice I didn't say no structure). Relationships are primary. There is little or no "institutional control". ("If you don't do what we tell you, we will remove your funding or your ordination or something.") (Concerned about heresy? Ask for my short article on the subject.) (What would I do if I couldn't use parentheses?)So, what does a "network of networks" look like? Well, they are just beginning to emerge but here's a description of one from Kevin Rains at VineyardCentral in Cincinnati:<<:: AllGroup+ ::>>One of the ways we've grown this year is by connecting with networks of homechurches in our region. This was evident to everyone who participated in ourrecent AllGroup+. We had 5 networks involved (3 from Cincinnati, 1 fromOxford (Miami), and 1 from Lexington). There were several others who wantedto participate but had already made commitments for that date. I can thinkof at least 5 other networks who fall into that category. To think thatthere are at least 10 other networks that we have a growing relationshipwith is amazing. At the beginning of this year there were only a few othersand 2 years ago we didn't know of any!And they keep coming! Today I'm meeting with an old friend who has been onstaff of a couple mega-churches in our region but recently decided to launcha church in his home. I haven't seen him in years so it will be interestingto hear what led him to this juncture...You can find out more about VineyardCentral at www.vineyardcentral.com. You can also sign up for Kevin's very helpful periodic emails by writing him at kevin@vineyardcentral.com John WhiteHouse Church CoachDenver, CO.Every believer a church planter.Every home a church.Every church building a training center.

This Is My Story

My name is Dave Broos.I was born in Bandung, West Java o­n September 24th, 1969.My name may sound foreign in the ear of Indonesians.You may wonder if I am actually a “white” person.It is not entirely true, but I am of a mixed descendant.My mother is of Dutch-Ambonese descendant.When I was in my mother’s womb, the man who is my mother’s lover, who is supposed to be a father to me, ran away with another woman.Therefore I was born out of wedlock.Some people call children such as I am as “bastard children”.Like it or not, it is a part of my life that I cannot avoid nor deny.That is why for my family name, I took o­n my mother’s maiden name.At home, my family calls me Dave.
Although I was raised o­nly by my mother, my life is not all bad.At home, we live with grandpa, grandma, and my mom’s younger brother’s a really cool uncle to me.But all of that changed when grandpa passed away.My grandma then moved back to the Netherlands and my mom got married.I was ten years old when she got married, and I was quite shocked at the way my stepfather tried to raise me.The values in which he views life are very different with the patterns that I had seen in my grandma.I had been a lot closer to my grandma because my mom had had to work.She worked in a pharmaceutical company Tempo corporation.
As an example, my grandma never used negative words or negative ways when she wanted to discipline me.My stepfather did all those things.He called me a “bastard child” or “a rascal” or other mean names.I was so confused and mad that I became a rebellious young man.I was also disappointed and angry at my mother, but I did not know how to express my feelings.
Before my grandma left us, I had been a good kid, I did not even like violence and I was always obedient to the rules both at home and at school.The time right after my mother’s marriage was the turning point in my life.Since then, I came to the dark world all because of my disappointment toward my parents.
At that time, I started to accept my friend’s persuasions to smoke, see pornographic pictures, picking fights with kids from neighboring schools, even drinking alcohol.I did all of when I was o­nly in 5th grade (PardomuanElementary School).
Into my teenage years, I made friends with the wrong crowd they were also kids who have been hurt by their parents.Religious things were the most boring things in my life at the time.I went to school in Bahureksa Middle School and Dago High School, these were Christian schools.During middle school, there was daily morning devotional time and in high school, there was also weekly devotional time in school.But Godly things never crossed my mind at all.Why?Because I thought: why would I care about God when He o­nly cares about nice families, I was an accident.
Teenage delinquency soon turned into serious crimes when I joined the gang Moonraker.All my life, I never thought I was able to do such violent acts or commit crime, but that’s what happened when I fell deeper into this dark world.Over and over again, I had brushes with the law, I was locked into suffocating jail cells, I got admitted into the hospital for overdoses of illegal drugs, also because of injuries sustained while in school and gang-related fights.There are many other vicious acts that I did at the time, all making me and my parents drift farther and farther apart.
My stepfather even repeatedly threw me out of the house.He o­nce gave me an ultimatum: he did not want to hear any police reports about me or of any incident that caused me to be admitted into the hospital.Every time I did o­ne of those things, he became extremely furious and threw me out of the house.My mother would usually go and look for me in the streets, but there was a time when even she became very angry that she threw me out as well.So I was taken in by my grandmother’s sister, and I stayed there until I graduated from high school in 1988.College did not make me change.I was even going at it with more intensity with my gang who was having heated rivalry with another gang in our city, the XTC gang.
In 1990, someone I do not remember who enrolled me in a Bible study course about the gospel according to John.At the time, I started to understand what God wants.Even though my comprehension was still hazy, I was too proud to ask anyone about matters related to spirituality.But God has His own ways.There were friends who gave me tracts, there were strange dreams that I dreamt, or even a touching sensation when I listened to a secular rock song.All leading to o­ne day in the beginning of March 1991, I started to think and consider regarding the ways of my life.I wondered why I had fallen so deep into the pit of darkness.One thing that I realized was the big question: why am I like this?I needed someone to LOVE me, willing to ACCEPT me the way I am, TRUST in me, and ENCOURAGE me by walking WITH ME and give me an EXAMPLE.
On March 28, 1991, I went to a revival meeting.The late Pastor Yeremia Riem was ministering at the time, and it was at that moment that I truly felt God’s touch.I realized my need for a Savior and Lord, and more than that, I saw all the criteria fulfilled in Jesus.On that day, I became a new creation in Christ.
When I came to repentance, no o­ne believed it, including my own parents.There had been too many lies in my life that no o­ne was sure if my repentance would last.In October 1991, because of all the doubts surrounding me, I decided to move to another city and start a new life.In the city of Surabaya, I surrendered my life to serve Lord Jesus full time.In the beginning, the congregation had their reservations, so I started my ministry as the church keeper.Later o­n, they began to trust me and made me the youth pastor up until 1994.In 1995, I joined the DiscipleshipTraining School from Youth with A Mission in Jakarta.In 1996, I went to the Gamaliel Institute of Theology, Tasikmalaya, West Java.In that same year, I also went to BasicLeadershipSchool from Youth with A mission in the city of Lawang, East Java.And so I became a staff member of the Discipleship Training School in Lawang’s Youth with A Mission.
In 1998, I started a congregation and a social foundation in Surabaya.I was a pastor to the congregation and I headed the foundation up until February 2005.Presently, I am part of the Oikos Church congregation in Surabaya, o­ne of the leadership team in the church.I also started and minister to the subculture community (the punk, gothic, and underworld community).I was appointed as an Overseer Shadow of the Cross in Indonesia and also o­ne of the coordinators of church pioneering in this country within the foundation of Outreach Fellowship International.
I was married to Novie Durant in 1999 and we are blessed with two children: Pilip Broos and the late Regina Broos.
The incredible thing that happened after my repentance was how my family my parents experienced being born again.Our relationship was also restored in 1995.My stepfather still goes to a Catholic church with my little sister (my mother’s child from her second marriage with my stepfather).And my mother went to GISI Eben Haezer in Bandung up until the time of her death in 1997.
This is my story: God can change this “garbage” that was my life.He made me to be His instrument, and even more than that, He adopted me to be His child.And He is able and willing to love all, including you.
God bless you all