Tim Keel, founding pastor at Jacob’s Well in Kansas City, says this: “My former church was a suburban megachurch functioning under Willow Creek’s seeker-targeted church paradigm. I was a naive and idealistic twenty-seven-year-old wanting to call off all bets in order to creatively engage everything in the pursuit of God.” This, from p. 83, is a defining theme for Tim Keel’s new book, Intuitive Leadership.
If you think this is your typical, here’s-how-to-do-it leadership book, forget about it. This book is part autobiography and part ecclesio-graphy (biography of a church) and it is one fine book. What do I like?
1. It is an insider’s story of how Keel became a Christian, went off to college and experienced faith community in-depth, how seminary got him confused, how he knew what he experienced in college is possible at the local church level, and how an emerging church in KC, Jacob’s Well, was founded.
2. It’s not idealistic; it’s not for duplicating; it’s for listening and learning from one who is “doing it.”
3. It’s sensitive but sensible to the realities of postmodernity, post Enlightenment, and post Christendom.
4. It’s reflective on many fine theologians and pastors and books, including Bonhoeffer and Newbigin and Esther DeWaal and Hauerwas and Rudolf Otto and others and you can see it is not just the same old cast of characters.
5. It proposes organic missional work that doesn’t have answers that can be applied in other places. So it calls for intuitive leadership.
6. It is reverent … that’s not common enough among emerging folks.