How do Christians deal with contentious issues? Sometimes every bit as badly as anyone else. If it’s on the Internet, Christians engage in ‘flame wars’ and even ‘troll’, just like other people do.
Here is one Christian leader who has opted for a different approach. Lysa TerKeurst sees this style as vital for the integrity of Christian witness. What do you think?
The Great Commission (Matthew 28:16-20) has disciple-making at its heart. But today’s culture already disciples people in other ways that compete with the way of Jesus. Watch Alan Hirsch on this subject:
Making disciples involves more than just information, says Richard Jacobsen, it involves application. I’m not sure whether he’s entirely fair to history teachers in what follows, but see what you think:
Read more of Richard’s thoughts on this subject here.
Discipleship by Timothy King on Flickr. Some rights reserved.
You cannot separate evangelism from discipleship, says veteran professor of evangelism, Robert Coleman. Read why here.
Belonging by Nick Veitch on Flickr. Some rights reserved.
I have in recent days featured two posts by J R Woodward. Here is a third, Discipleship and the Four Spaces of Belonging. He talks about how the whole church needs to lead by example for people to be discipled, and for Christians to grow in missional focus. He also delineates four ‘spaces’ where discipleship can happen:
* public space – a large gathering of similarly-minded people, such as a big church event;
* social space – a community of ‘extended family’ and networked relationships, say, about 20-40 people in size, like ancient Roman households, which were the building blocks of their society (and like the size of some contemporary churches?);
* personal space – private relationships of eight to fifteen people, like a home group;
* intimate space – with our closest friends and family who know us well, and with whom we do not need to be ashamed.
Woodward asks us how well we operate within all four spaces to develop misson-focussed disciples. He suggests that some churches only concentrate on one or two of these, when we would do better to have all four in mind.
What do you think?
Conventional youth work is not effective, says Seth Barnes of Adventures In Missions. If you want to see teenagers in your church grow as disciples of Jesus Christ, take them on mission trips – for at least a month at a time.
To find out why he advocates this, watch this video:
Prayer Chapel by Randy OHC on Flickr. Some rights reserved.
Today in many Methodist churches is Covenant Sunday, when we annually renew our commitment to Jesus Christ. Garth Hewitt’s prayer for the new year on his spirituality page might well serve as an act of dedication for us as we recommit ourselves to the mission of God.
Why not comment below if you prayed this prayer as an act of dedication today?