24 June 2009

On Movements...

I read the following this morning on Felicity Dale's blog.  As usual Felicity has done her homework and has given some great insights...
Characteristics of a Movement

For two or more years now, I have been having regular conversations with a group of women--all leaders, strategists in the Kingdom.  Our conversation today was on the subject of movements.  What characterizes a movement?  (Examples of movements today would include the GLBT (gay/lesbian etc.) movement and the New Age movement.)

Here are some things we came up with:

  • It generates momentum, feeds passion, attracting and uniting people with like passions
  • People start doing similar things because of their shared values
  • Usually there is a quick change in a relatively short amount of time—the concept of the tipping point
  • There is a change in change public perception, law—even changing culture 
  • There are people who are change agents/catalysts (either one person or a group or an amalgam of different people at the grassroots)
  • There needs to be a climate for change that either exists or is set by the catalysts
  • A movement can last for a short or long time—often depending on how the movement was generated (e.g. Hitler and the Nazi movement was thankfully a short-lived movement)
  • An appetite and energy for change often begins with younger people
  • They are often a reaction to the status quo--hence persecution may follow

There are three structural components to a movement:

  1. Decentralization--things don't just happen with one leader or in one place
  2. Segmentation--things may look different in different places but they share similar values
  3. Interconnection--those involved in the movement are able to connect together

Are we part of a movement?

In the beginning of my Christian Jesus-following experience, we were part of a very unique, amazing Holy Spirit birthed movement.  It had no real "head" but only "change agents."  It was filled with passion, momentum and grace!  It flowed from people into people and brought transformation.  It was great! 

But it caramelized - got very sweet and solid - institutionalized and bogged down.

But anybody who ever tasted "the movement" has never been the same and longs for that sense again.

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