Monday, January 14, 2013

making disciples

I went to a Pastor's breakfast this morning with several hundred others to hear Francis Chan.  The host church is of the largest in the area.  I will start by saying I'm not opposed to large.  I have been there and was blessed in so many ways.  The opportunity to hear Chan address this type of crowd had my interest.  The morning was good and the host church was gracious.

As has become his style, he quickly confessed the problem with popularity and the impact it has on a person.  As he shared, the heart of his message zeroed in on discipleship.  That topic is often alluded to, but not so often lived.  It was a direct, honest, to the point message that gave me hope.  Here's why.

Too often the pursuit is in how big can we make it.  How much can we do, spend, get away with as well as how cool and cutting edge can we market it as has become the norm in church world marketing.  Chan's message was don't try and build the mega, just be faithful in making disciples.  Disciples make disciples is the true key.  We have to talk it, model it, invest in it, re-invest, ....  I think you get the point.

Too many want to go to the best show in town and leave inspired to come back the next week rather than challenged to go make disciples.  It isn't about our education, it is about our pursuit of the divine healer who came as a baby and left as a risen King.  It is about modeling his life.  It is about the next conversation with the next person.  It is about continuing to invest the lives of people.  It is about living out the truth of God's word as we walk this life with others.  It is about discipleship.

I did get a chuckle this morning as he was wrapping up his talk.  As I said, we were in an amazing facility with all the modern trimmings, and he point blank said "this won't last".  This isn't it. This can't be sustained.  He wasn't poor mouthing, but just speaking about the reality that the financial, physical, emotional pressure to maintain the big is wearing people out.  "Simplify"!  If he said it once he said it a bunch.  "Go and make disciples"... Jesus words, our command, pretty simple!  Let's do it!

Monday, January 7, 2013

weird the new normal

Getting ready for the third week in our new series, "weird the new normal".  Yesterday was a difficult day.  This past week was a difficult week of preparing to speak.  Preparing to speak involves so much more than reading bible, books, articles, etc....  It involves asking yourself tough questions about your own life.  It involves difficult introspection.  It involves confession of failure, repentance and accountability to move to a better place and it involves the willingness to be vulnerable with the people you are sharing life with.

As we discussed getting in to a healthy rhythm in our lives yesterday, I could see in Jennifer's eyes that look of love.  She knows it is my struggle to work too fast, too long, too....  But she loves me...  She has a kind and firm way of calling me back to a healthy rhythm.  She doesn't manipulate or demand, but rather out of her own love for God and desire for things to be in rhythm and healthy her way draws me back. 

Rhythm is key to being in balance.  It is not always easy to choose balance, but it is essential.  Let's keep moving our lives toward the rhythm of God's drum beat in our lives.  Walking in step with His Spirit and leading is always the right pace, the right direction, the right way.  What beat are you walking to?