Rick McKinley is the pastor of Imago Dei Community and is more popularly known as Donald Miller’s pastor friend in “Blue Like Jazz.”

Advent Conspiracy is a missional outreach that is global that Imago Dei, his community does. It started as Rick and two of his friends were talking about how they hated Christmas. They said what if we worshiped more by giving more and spending less. So they started giving water among many more things to areas that deeply need them. That’s their Christmas story that they now have other than Christmas story most of us have.


Mission can become the new distraction, we get so into the good thing that we miss the best thing. Mission is a secondary response to worship. The challenge with mission is that if you actually leave the walls of your church into the difficulties of people’s lives. So how do we never lose the main thing as we go about doing really good things. The passage is 2 Samuel 6. (Rick’s lecture is a sermon, interesting approach; not because he doesn’t have ‘lecture material’ but rather my guess is because he believes that if we can learn to place ourselves into the story of scripture that will transform how we do mission. It won’t be the new thing or the new model, it will be an enduring ‘hermeneutic’.


He contemporary-izes David’s situation in 2 Samuel 6, helping us see where we fit into the story. I can’t tell if Donald Miller took the cadence of his prose & humor from Rick or if Rick took his homiletical cadence & humor from Miller or they’re just really funny and cynically like-minded, either way Rick’s is an intriguing sermonic style. In this story Israel is trying to innovate their worship style with an ark-cart rather than carrying it by poles as they were commanded. And Uzzah epitomizes this approach to worship, for Uzzah God had been put in a literal box and God killed him because you don’t take care of God he takes care of you. Somewhere in serving God he lost God. David is upset by this.

Skipping forward David naked dance before the Lord is critiqued by his wife, she observes and critiques and evaluates worship rather than entering in. We like David’s wife can and do loose the livingness of God that David knew. We need to be scared and aware of this God, our worship and communion and baptisms need to be saturated with this reality otherwise we have forgotten what worship is and are just dusting off religious artifacts. Experts don’t touch people, and they’re not touched by people. We’re not called to be like that. YOU DON’T NEED THE NEW CART YOU JUST NEED TO DANCE BEFORE THE KING. That is what it means to break in to the Kingdom.