As I continue tell a little of Tom’s story, I have to say that when you hear about some of the stuff that people have been through in life it becomes far less likely that you want to judge them and far more likely that you will feel the compassion that Jesus has for the lost. Continue Reading →
So previously I mentioned that I began a conversation with Tom at the gym and he had a whole list of things that led him to conclude that he didn’t believe in God or, to use his words ‘isn’t interested in religion’.
As my conversation with him continued he made an interesting statement. He told me that while he doesn’t believe in God he does believe in demons. Continue Reading →
I have to be honest and say that I find it amazing at the way that evangelism and discipleship are frequently seen as different things. Evangelism is often seen as a public preaching event or organized campaign and discipleship is what happens to people after they make a faith decision. What amazes me is that this understanding that is so prevalent in churches across the world is so far from what we see in Scripture. Continue Reading →
A few years ago I was speaking at an event in Didcot, England. It was a gathering of many churches in the town as we were launching an initiative to reach young ‘never-churched’ people from across the area. As the evening went on we reached the point where it was time for the prayers of intercession. The minister who made his way to the front to lead these prayers didn’t look hugely exciting and I confess that I did wonder why they had asked this person to lead the intercessory prayers for a generation that has never heard the gospel.
When he reached the front he slowly opened up a piece of paper on which were written the words that he was going to pray….. Continue Reading →
An expression that I hear a lot is ‘unchurched’, this word is used to describe people that do not attend church and in many parts of the world there are huge numbers of people that are, as we say ‘unchurched’. A question I like to ask Christians to consider is ‘how good a word is this to describe people who do not attend church?’ Continue Reading →
I came to know Jesus having never really been inside a church. I remember the feeling of walking into a church and, to be honest, wondering what on earth was happening. I was 19 when I became a Christian, and, having decided to follow Jesus I then went to a church near to where lived. There were so many things that I just didn’t really get as I observed, week-after-week, the things that happened. I quickly discovered that it was necessary to sing now that I was a Christian. Every week, we followed the same pattern. We began at 11.00am had a hymn, a prayer, a hymn, a prayer, an offering, a bible reading and sermon, a hymn and then home – it always finished by 12.00 noon. Continue Reading →
There was a time when most people living in what were once ‘Christian’ countries saw the world from the Christian perspective or, to put it another way, viewed the world through a Christian lens. Back then it wasn’t a matter of whether a person went to church but where they went. Back then things were like that. But that was then, this is now! Continue Reading →
In the previous post I made the suggestion that you could ask a friend or neighbor a question and then take time to listen to the answer.
At one level this is so simple but the difficulty, it seems, is that so few of us have, or want to make, the time to really listen to other people and get to know them. There are, I guess, numerous reasons why this is the case and the one that is most often given is that life is just too busy. I remember a number of years ago coming across a quote that I found so challenging, it simply said: Continue Reading →
So the ministry of God ‘in the flesh’ begins in an animal feeding trough! I know that it is so easy to become familiar with this truth and this familiarity can lead to us losing the wonder of it all. There is so much ‘wrapped’ up in this birth but in terms of what it means to be missional, the example of Jesus must surely be ‘to fully and humbly enter into the experience of those that we are seeking to save’. Continue Reading →
Ok so missional is a word that lots of people are talking about so ‘what’s new?’
I guess that, in some ways, there is nothing new about it but I sense, as I travel to many parts of the world and work with churches in a variety of contexts that there is an enormous lack in understanding what it really means to engage with people in the community, especially those that have never been to church.
So this short series of blogs will explore what it means to be truly missional and I hope will contribute something to this hugely important issue. Continue Reading →