The Disruptors | TxCCDA Conference, Day 2

The church uses it’s resources to send its people across the ocean, but I’ve never even seen them across the street.
— Mark DeYmaz

Mark is white and from Arkansas. He is the first keynote speaker and launches the conference with a talk entitled, “Multiethnic Church”. He begins with a sobering question, “Why is the local church segregated when the Kingdom of Heaven isn’t?”. The question preceded the gut wrenching statistics describing the immigration, assimilation, and the decline of the Christian American church.

By this point in the talk I begin to fade a bit as I wonder why this white guy is telling me things I already know and then he tells the story of his heritage. His story of being born out of wedlock and the result of an affair remind me the power of stories. They are needed for context and point to a God who always has a purpose.

The purpose of this talk from a guy in Arkansas is to encourage the Body of Christ to see the power of disruption. Mark spends the next 20 minutes explaining how the Church needs more disruptors, people who create new things by getting outside of systems. Just as he finishes his definition a slide of Facebook, Amazon, and Uber pop up reminding us that we once had to use a phone to communicate outside of face to face, buy things in person, and get in a yellow car and pay with cash if we didn’t have a vehicle.

As Mark finished telling us about industry leaders he then quiets his voice and then begins to cheerfully explain how our great God is a disruptor as he….

  • Disrupted darkness by creating light

  • Disrupted the Law thru Christ

  • Disrupted the power of sin by granting us salvation

  • Disrupted death through life

  • Disrupted time with eternity

Mark from Arkansas now has my full attention! He closes with calling the Body to respond with disruption as we:

  • Walk, worship, and work together

  • Live beyond tolerance in Agape love

  • Bring peace into communities

  • Advance measurable community transformation beyond rhetoric to results.

On a Tuesday in Texas I am really thankful for a white man from Arkansas whose mind was challenged when he began to rethink about the church, the community, and the world. I am glad that God is disrupting Mark and pray he disrupts me as we both seek to disrupt our communities for the sake of the Gospel.

Jen Young