Ever wonder how ordinary people, using ordinary resources, can have an extraordinary impact for God’s Kingdom? That’s the heart behind Zume (Greek word for leaven), a new disciple making / training movement that launched February 14th. To learn more, go to their website at www.zumeproject.com and also check out the video below. Zume will change your life, and the world.
Have you ever considered that the Western church usually presents the Gospel in terms of forgiveness through the removal of guilt, but people in the Majority World tend to seek honor or spiritual power? If we are to be effective Kingdom ambassadors in today’s globalized world, Christians need to understand and communicate a three-dimensional gospel that speaks to all of these perspectives.
So, we wanted to let you know about an upcoming event that might help fit out your tool kit in new ways. Our friends at Eternity Bible College will be hosting a special evening conference with keynote speaker Jayson Georges. Jayson is the founding editor of www.HonorShame.com, and has also authored a solid resource on this subject, “The 3D Gospel: Ministering in Guilt, Shame and Fear Cultures”.
The conference will be held on May 13, 2017, from 5-9 pm in Simi Valley, CA. For more information or to register, check out www.eternitybiblecollege.com/3Dgospel
I recently read a devotional by Os Hillman that made me rethink some parts of my competitive nature. Here’s some of what Os said:
“There is absolutely no place for competitiveness in ministry or marketplace activity if you understand God’s view of receiving. The Scripture tells us that we are not only to bless our competition, but we are also called to bless our enemies.”
“The reason we can do this is because our security and provision is not based on posturing ourselves against another, but fulfilling what God has called us to do. When we take a proactive step to bless another, we actually apply a Kingdom principle that results in greater blessing to others, the Kingdom of God and even to ourselves. Some would say that we are in danger of losing “market share”. This is the worldly model of competition. Those who cannot bless others are insecure in their own calling and insecure in God’s ability to provide for their own enterprise.”
“LORD, you have assigned me my portion and my cup; you have made my lot secure. The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance” (Ps 16:5-6).
Have you ever considered what role persecution has in the life of a follower of Christ? Or, how can we develop a healthy attitude towards the challenges we face? Another way to think about this is to ask, what is our ‘theology of suffering’? Reflect on these questions as you watch the following video from Curtis Sergeant.
Today I’d like to share with you a blog post from Dr. Bob Snyder with IHS Global. It’s about calling, but also about being. Bob wrote:
At times on my journey with Jesus it has been difficult to discern what God is calling me to do. Actually the call of God is quite simple. Jesus most often expressed it in two words, ‘Follow me’.
“To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps.” 1 Peter 2:21 NIV
His desire for me is to be more and more like Him in my inner being and reflect Him in all that I do. Jesus’ call for my life is not about vocation or geography but rather to BE more like Him in absolutely every area of my life.
However, whenever I prioritize DOING for Jesus over BEING like Him, I can find it easy to justify un-Christ-like behavior in the name of DOING good.
The call of Jesus is to be more like Him each day. That must start deep inside of me. (Matthew 5:3-10)
What if we all started to view time as a precious commodity, something to be carefully stewarded and wisely managed? What difference would it make for God’s Kingdom if His people recognized that every second … matters? Watch this video.
Do you put God in a box? How big is your box?
Curtis Sergeant fears that we ALL put God is a box sometimes. He also holds that ALL of us can do some enlarging of that box (and some searching for a deeper bottom). Listen as he explains.
While watching some videos from the 2015 Finishing The Task conference (a meeting focused on how we can take the Gospel to the remaining unreached people groups of the world), I was struck by what Francis Chan shared at the start of his talk. It was a confession of sorts, and in it I heard my own voice as well. Listen to this clip, and ask God to reveal to you what attitudes or actions might need to change in your life.
Some folks are trying to figure out how to do a Discovery Bible Study (DBS or three-thirds group), but are not sure how to get started and keep it going. If that’s you, you might want to try this free curriculum from CityTeam. Each bullet point links to a PDF file that you can download and save for your own use.
This isn’t a “classic” three-thirds group curriculum, in that there is a more finely-tuned plan, but it might be a great ‘bridge’ to a full three-thirds vision, especially if you’re trying to adapt an existing small group philosophy over to a full-on three-thirds process.
With Christmas just two days away, I thought I’d encourage you with some Christmas Cheer.
First, a joke. Three men died on Christmas Eve and were met by Saint Peter at the pearly gates entering into Heaven. “In honor of this Holy season,” Saint Peter said, “You must each offer something that symbolizes Christmas to get into heaven.” The first man fumbled through his pockets and pulled out a lighter. He flicked it on. “It represents a Christmas candle,” he said. “You may pass through the pearly gates,” Saint Peter said. The second man reached into his pocket and pulled out a set of keys. He shook them and said, “They’re Christmas bells.” Saint Peter said, “You may pass through the pearly gates.” The third man started searching desperately through his pockets and finally pulled out a pair of women’s glasses. St. Peter looked at the man with a raised eyebrow and asked, “And just what do those symbolize?” The man replied, “It’s like the Christmas songs, they’re Carol’s”.
Second, some good news from the angels. “And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with fear. And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.” And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!” (Luke 2:9-14 ESV)
Hopefully you can use one or both of these to spread some joy this Christmas, but the real Joy to the World lies in telling how God’s Story played out with the birth of a baby in a manger. That baby was Emmanuel, God with us, the Savior of the World. Merry Christmas.