gospel rhythms…


December 8, 2010 by Dwight Bernier

This past week at our missional community gathering, we talked about the rhythms in our lives. We also talked about how to live those ordinary rhythms with gospel intentionality. The GCM collective, Soma communities and Windham Baptist Church have taught me so much about these rhythms. So, these are nothing new and are just helping make us more intentional about how we live our lives unto the glory of God and our enjoyment of Him. Here are the 6 rhythms:

rhythm 1 – story-formed – we understand, experience and intersect with God’s Story.


  • Learn and communicate the Story of God together
  • Become familiar with each other’s stories and the stories of people in the area of Montreal that God has placed us (at work, in our neighborhood, restaurants, etc.)

rhythm 2 – listen – we set aside regular time to listen to God both backward & forward.


  • Listen to God together when we gather to discern His will – prayer will be a normal part of meetings
  • Set aside regular times to personally listen to God
  • Listen to God while listening to those in our MC and mission
  • Identify those who listen to God well and seek out more training

rhythm 3 – celebrate – we regularly gather together to celebrate God’s extravagant blessing.


  • Gather regularly with our MC and local expression to celebrate God’s grace
  • Celebrate God’s grace by coming together around special events
  • Join in the celebrations in Montreal in ways that intentionally demonstrate the gospel of Jesus Christ.
  • Create or serve at 4 key celebrations annually within our mission

rhythm 4 – bless – we intentionally bless others through words, gifts or actions.


  • Together make an inventory of what we have been given for the sake of blessing others
  • Make our blessings known within Initiative 22 & our city so there is accessibility to what we have.
  • Grow in our financial giving together by 1% this year (i.e. from 10% to 11%)
  • Designate a specific blessing to specific person/project

rhythm 5 – eat – we regularly eat meals with others to invite them into the community of God.


  • Break bread together weekly in homes to remember Jesus’ death for us
  • Eat a weekly meal together
  • Have one open meal monthly to invite people into our community
  • Pick one local restaurant to eat at regularly (minimally 2 times a month)

rhythm 6 – reCreate – we take time to rest, play, create and restore beauty to reflect God to others.


  • Work with the city in a specific remodel/refinish project
  • Start something for our area of mission
  • Vacation/Play together

This is a good place to start in conversation with your community. And consider adopting a covenant within the missional community which communicates this to each one of the members so that they can remind one another what they are about.



4 thoughts on “gospel rhythms…

  1. Jana says:

    Interesting thoughts, Dwight. Just one thing: I’m not quite sure what you mean by “rhythms.” It’s probably a very familiar term to you, but to those of us who haven’t seen it used in this context before, could you expound on it further? 🙂

    • Dwight Bernier says:

      Jana… The rhythms I’m talking about are normal things we do. We eat, we celebrate, we tell stories, we recreate, we listen to God, and we serve. We are just identifying them and being intentional about doing them as a missional community as well as inviting people into those rhythms. Rather than eat alone, we eat with others; rather than celebrate alone, we purposefully celebrate with others. We are really attempting to live ordinary life (rhythms of life) with gospel intentionality.

  2. Sam says:

    Hey Dwight, could you include the Scripture references for each of the rhythms. I know they’re biblical, I just want to track them down. Thanks!

    • Dwight Bernier says:

      Sam – I will get those references to you. But most of it doesn’t come from just one verse. Eating is something we do – so we do it with gospel intentionality. Celebrating is something we do – so we do it with gospel intentionality. Sharing our stories and listening to other’s stories is something we do – so we do it with gospel intentionality; etc.
      These are taken from more of a Biblical theology than anything else. When we see eating, we see that we chose a different identity for ourselves through eating; we can use eating for the gospel because we see that God uses eating to remind us about certain things (His Son’s life & death), and it is what we do to celebrate when we are with Jesus (Marriage supper of the Lamb).
      So… we can look at all these in a biblical perspective rather than just a chapter/verse approach.
      Hope that makes sense.

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