Michael Beck

This article demonstrates how the Florida UMC is embracing the Fresh Expressions approach. How would you empower your churches to embrace fresh expressions of Church? On April 8th, we are asking all the churches in our district to begin the first step of the fresh expressions process which looks this: Listening. Loving and Serving. Building Community. Exploring […]

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Michael Beck

We know Fresh Expressions can catalyze the renewal of existing congregations, but can this approach bring revitalization to an entire district? The North Central District of the Florida Conference of the United Methodist Church is about to find out! I was inspired when our new district superintendent, Rev. June Edwards, preached in her inaugural address […]

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Michael Beck

Pioneering is tough! Not only do we face opposition from the inhabitants of the new territories into which we follow the Spirit to plant the Gospel, but when we are led to challenge defective or outdated systems, promote innovations, and catalyze movements, we can be attacked by people within the body of Christ as well. […]

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churches blenders michael beck
Michael Beck

One of my friends, a health nut who loves Jesus, has the same smoothie for lunch every day. It’s a mixture of spinach, fruits, and yogurt. While I admire her discipline and dedication, I sometimes wonder how she can drink the same thing for lunch seven days a week. Doing that would drive me crazy! […]

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God with us
Michael Beck

“And they will call him Immanuel” (which means “God with us”). ~Matthew 1:23 Most churches decline and even die because the “us” of their “God with us” is too small. I believe fresh expressions catalyze revitalizations in existing congregations because they expand the “withness” and the “us-ness” of those congregations, which is profoundly illustrated by […]

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Michael Beck

Is grace something you can hear? Would you recognize it as a distinct sound if you heard it? On Advent Sunday, churches all over the world began telling the story leading up to the birth of Jesus. At Wildwood, we began that journey by looking closely at an encounter between a powerless teenage girl in […]

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Michael Beck

Have you ever watched a toddler learn shapes through playing with a shape cube? It’s an amazing trial-and-error process through which the preschooler actually learns shapes. During this failing-forward experience, the toddler bangs the shape box with the different shapes. As a consequence of trying to force the square into the circle, the hexagon into […]

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Michael Beck

Growing up I played many sports, both at competitive and recreational levels. In my neighborhood, one of the things we loved to do to get through the dog days of summer was our daily pick-up basketball game. A random group of kids, a ball, and the local park were the only ingredients needed—no phone tree, […]

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Michael Beck

“Preacher… this is a really bad idea.” The woman standing in my office stating these words was a matriarch of our congregation; a person of influence, whom I normally looked to for guidance and support. Being that I am a person with a fairly high risk-tolerance, it is insight like hers that often helps me […]

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