I am going to write some post that are in preparation for a book I am working on regarding my life with John Wimber. I met John when I was 11 years old and from that point forward probably spent more time with him than anyone other than family. By the time I was a teen, I was immersed in ministry until I followed John as pastor at Vineyard Anaheim. He was, without a doubt, the greatest and most influential person in my life.
John and I had good times and bad alike. You're not going to spend 33 years at church, conferences, playing golf and interacting in numerous ways and not see the bad as well as the good. I hate to disappoint, but I won't be writing about the bad. I have no desire to dishonor the man or his family. I made that decision at his funeral, as I watched and listened to his grand children speaking of him with such love and admiration. I knew John for 33 years, and 4 months or so weren't so hot, so what should I focus on, the Elephant or the Ant? So when I write I will be giving you the true story, just not all the story. What I am going to be focusing on and highlighting are the things that are to me really interesting, some entertaining and helpful today.
John introduced some models for ministry that opened the way for so many people to experience the work and ministry of the Holy Spirit. Thousands of people, who would never darken the door of a Charismatic or Pentecostal meeting, had no problem attending John's ground breaking course, MC510, at Fuller Seminary, or the conference by the same name. Thousands of people were introduced to things they never would have considered because John was able to get to the heart of the matter, stripping away all the things that would make it very difficult for a day in and day out evangelical to stomach. Getting to the substance, leaving off the theatrics and hyperbole that emerged in various streams over time.
Hopefully as this gets out I will hear from people who were impacted and they will use the comment section to tell their stories. This is just touching on one small way John influenced the way we do church. There are some ideas or principles that were at play in doing, or not doing certain things. As best I can, I will dissect and highlight some of these things that are as relevant as ever.