For the last few weeks we have been talking about 2 ways of being, and investing time and resources:
|4 Corners||4 Walls|
|TCC changes BD forever for Christ||Every hope, dream, and wish of yours for TCC comes true|
|New believers baptized, those far from Christ come near||Members retained|
|We make Kingdom decisions||We make decisions with people in mind mostly|
|Families, marriages transformed||We have nice programs for most people|
|Disciples empowered and sent||Disciples learn about God|
|On fire believers living missional lives is key result of our church||Church members are the key results of our church|
|Worship is dynamic and evolving, while rooted in deep theology||Worship is perfect (in your opinion)|
|Church challenges me
Driven by faith and empowered disciples
|Church is safe place
Driven by structure and control
One list is driven by what happens inside the 4 walls of a church, and has a very narrow and people centered perspective. The second the 4 corners is a broad vision that is God’s Kingdom centered. Each next few weeks I want to look at the items on the list and share more specifically what these ways of being mean. Today I want to look at which is the priority: those far from Christ come near or members retained.
I place these alongside one another, because I am finding in conversations that if we are not intentional about Christ’s call to bring those far from God near, we will instead focus on the immediate, and often the immediate people. Let’s be really clear, it is a wonderful thing that a church would be such a healthy embodiment of what the Bible calls the church to be that people stay there. What I am instead writing about is where we place customer service and member satisfaction, over our biblical calling. Often Jesus calls for us to live in such a way that it makes us uncomfortable. Jesus says in Matthew 16, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.” Jesus makes it clear that to follow him means dying to our ambitions and rising with His. Jesus also says this about His (and our) mission field, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. 32 I have not come to call the righteous but sinners to repentance.”
Our call as Christ followers is to seek the lost and least for God. And to do that is uncomfortable. It stretches us, because it calls not for us to do what we are already comfortable with, but what God is calling us to, that can only He can empower, if we will trust, if we will have faith.
Jesus call his disciples to make Jesus knows to others (John 13:35), and to do so by our love. Let’s start here, do you have any relationships where you are intentionally sharing the love of Christ with someone far from God? How might God be opening opportunities to grow you by investing in more relationships or deeper into the ones you already have? How will God use you so that those far from God may come near?