In cross-pollination, the pollen from one flower contaminates another. Reproduction is dependent on something of life being transferred to another where a catalytic effect happens. You likely do not need to move your church building to a new location, but you do need to cross pollinate with other ministries and agencies.
In our feeding program, we have easily had 40-50 other churches and groups that have come and helped us fulfil our urban calling. Every time someone from outside comes and has the 5 senses tour, they get infected with something that they take home.
Urban ministries like mine need the strength and resource of stronger churches like yours. You are our greatest allies. But it’s not one-way.
Suburban and town churches need an urban mission portal—a community connection that puts your people face-to-face with the ‘other’ in your community. The Good Samaritan in Jesus’ story is the good ‘other’. It was not the victim’s own people who restored but the unexpected other man. You are someone’s unexpected ‘other’.
Aesop’s fable about the lion and the mouse is an example of this. The more powerful beast can be snared. The lion was so powerful, but trapped in a net. What is your church trapped in?
The unlikely, weak mouse was able to bring freedom by chewing through the thing that held the lion captive. When you encounter the weak ‘other’ it may be what saves you and frees you to release your strength.
Cross-pollination already happens here. Someone in your church already has face-to-face encounters with the ‘others’. If you want to change the culture of your church, you need to start bringing stories of the ‘others’ to the centre of your message. Tell your stories and watch the reproduction. People will always be infected by a good story.
(You can watch the full message athttp://wearegateway.ca/sermon/community-what-weve-learned-part-2/ )