Emerging Church – Youth Work For Grown Ups – part 4

Chaos Theory

This week I’ve been learning about Appreciative Inquiry (excuse the American spelling).  It’s a way of helping organisations discover what they value and how they can build on that.  It appeals because it doesn’t talk about what went wrong or who is to blame, just that things have changed.

Part of the course focused on a model of organisational life which suggested that for an organisation facing crisis to survive it has to consciously embrace the chaos of the wilderness.  For most established organisations this kind of step is difficult.  We like certainty and structure.  After all, what kind of organisation isn’t organised?

Well… I can think of two.  Youth Work and Emerging Church.

By not being organised I don’t mean without any rules or structure.  The rules and structures are small, limited to that particular group.  It’s not that they don’t relate to something bigger, they do, but they are not controlled by that bigger organisation.

This lack structure means that they can be creative and adaptive.

That kind of group needs a particular kind of leadership.  The kind that works collaberatively, values and develops other’s talents and gifts and isn’t too precious about who’s idea it is.