A Thought

“A thought:  Just because the people around you may allow you to be less than doesn’t mean you have to be that.  Push yourself to do better and be better and always be open to learning from ANYONE!!!!!”

I put the above message on Facebook.  It was for individuals but as I was reading this book, “Building A Discipling Culture,” it occurred to me that many churches have also chosen to be less than.  They don’t push themselves, their leaders or their members to do better and be better.  They do not possess a ‘discipling culture.’  

Building off the three main ways we learn (Classroom/Lecture passing on of information, Apprenticeship and Immersion), they say that in order for churches to create or build a ‘discipling culture,’ churches have to provide the information, imitate the process and allow for innovation.  They cite many instances in scripture where Jesus modeled this process for us but somehow we have mixed things up.  We don’t realize that “If you make disciples, you always get the church.  But if you make a church, you rarely get disciples.” (Mike Breen and the 3DM Team, Building A Discipling Culture, Second Edition, Pawleys Island, SC, 2011)

For those interested in creating and building a ‘discipling culture,’ this is a must read.

People of Blessing

This past Thursday, I attended a ‘Missional Forum’ put together by BODY | Oak Cliff.  The speaker was Fuller Seminary professor, Reggie McNeal and it turns out he and I have very similar thoughts about the state of the church today.  Two things I took away from the gathering were:

1.  As the people of God, we are to be a people of blessing.

2. We are to partner with God in his redemptive mission in the world and this means our lives are to be a mission trip – the way we live, how we treat people, who we engage, etc.

It was a good reminder for me at a time when I’ve been somewhat frustrated with churches and Christians.  Another reminder was a clip a friend sent me where they were testing to see if people would see the homeless people as they walked by.  In this clip, the ‘homeless’ people were the loved ones of the people walking by.  Yet no one noticed.  How I live my life, how I see and treat people, who I reach out to and seek to know, all say a lot about whether my walk and my talk are in sync, whether I am a person of blessing or not and whether I am partnering with God in His work or seeking to create my own.

Churches have somehow gone astray and don’t focus as much on living as Christ lived and blessing others. McNeal suggests that over the years we have some confused things and see going to church as the end point, not being the church. Being involves giving of ourselves, our time and our resources to help those in need of assistance and to reach out to those in need of a friend. So, at the end of each day, let’s reflect on whether we have been people of blessing and what more can we do the following day. Lord God, please bless us so that we can be a blessing to others and help in building your kingdom.