There seems to be some confusion on who does what in the Kingdom.
Many people think it's our responsibility to grow the church and God's responsibility to grow disciples.
It's a common conception that we need to spend our "God-time" in nice, comfortable, Christian places. And, that's what we do... in fact, many believers have few non-Christians in their circle of friends.
Plus, we work hard to bring people in to our Christian places and shield them from the non-Christian groups and places. We are sometimes surprised that people who don't know God don't feel that much like coming into our Christian places. So, collectively we spend endless amounts of time and effort trying to get them to come in, stay in and stay focused on what is happening in the building and our Christian meetings. Ever invite a non-Christian to a prayer meeting? There is about as much enthusiasm as inviting a chicken to a cook out with Colonel Sanders.
Let's check out how Jesus did it. Yes, he did go to the gathering of God's people. Whew. Nothing wrong with hanging out with believers!
But, Jesus wasn't very religious. He WENT to where they were. He hung out with the bad people. He ate with them. He drank with them. He even made wine for them. The religious people hated him for this.
Jesus didn't come to establish a 'new religion'. He can to save us and to teach us how to live in his domain.
Jesus left us without a doubt... if we are going to be the light of 'the world', we need to GO to where the world hangs out.
He left us his teachings in the New Testament and his instructions on what to do when we hang out.
Love and serve God.
Love and serve others.
Jesus said to go into all the world and make disciples of all people groups (nations).
Did you notice the word 'go'? Since MOST of our church effort is on 'get them to come' and sending people out... telling them to 'go' isn't so much what we do. Oh, maybe we will do a 'token' going... like maybe handing out water at a race. But, that is a far cry from teaching people how to love, engage, interact and reach people right where they are.
We tend to 'go' out into the world most every day: work, shopping, dining, visiting friends and relatives, etc. etc. The people in front of us are the people we can love and serve. As people warm up to following Jesus, they find themselves warming up to spending time with other Christ-followers.
So... this is a BIG CHANGE and we need to make it or we will not turn the world upside down.
How did Jesus make disciples. He took others with him as he went to where people were... He demonstrated loving people, serving them and telling them about the Kingdom. Out there. That's how he intended for us to make disciples of each other.
I have seen this in action, I learned, I've applied it to my own life. Few have had the opportunity. Each and every Christian leader needs to do this. We might even consider, if a person doesn't do this, are they really a leader that demonstrates Christ?
Like anything, making disciples like this can seem hard until you've seen others do it and done it yourself. If you have never seen others living their faith 'out loud' - your first step might be to pray for the opportunity.
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