Thirteen years ago, I helped start a new worshipping community in Uptown, and the single hardest thing about it was coming up with the name. We brainstormed for weeks on end, and nothing seemed right. Then, all at once, "Spirit Garage" fell into place. And the tagline "The Church with the Really Big Door" immediately followed.
While I'm not one to favor automotive metaphors, it worked well for our community. In fact, a few years later we found ourselves renting a theater space called the Theatre Garage.
Now, in 2010, I'm about to do this all over again: start a new worship experience, gather a new community, attempt to articulate what we are about to people who, perhaps, have given up on church. 'We have a name: Bonfire. But we don't have that crucial tagline yet: that pithy phrase that will make it OK for someone to come in the door and check it out. It's been noted that most churches with "weird" names come out of an evangelical tradition of "decision" theology. They have a goal they want to get you to, and they will tell you how to get there. At Bonfire, we're going to open up the stories and see what happens.
Tomorrow night, not by accident, we're looking at the story of Moses and the burning bush, when God gives God's very ambiguous name. I'm praying God will name us in the weeks to come as well.