Making disciples 1: turning up the heat

Dear brothers and sisters at Stromlo,

I’ve now spent a fair bit of time pouring over your comments from church this week. Wow! Thank you for your thoughtful, honest, humble, reflective feedback. For the most part the feedback is raw and vulnerable. It’s not proud. It’s not self-satisfied. Yet neither is it defeatist or dismissive. I read the chorus of our feedback to be saying…

“This is hard. I find it hard. So many things keep me from sharing Jesus with others. And I want this not to be so.

My plan is to distil some of the key issues from our comments so that we can encourage one another to be unashamed of the message of Jesus. We will work together on some ways to strengthen and equip each other to relate better with others who don’t know Jesus. We will consider what is helpful, and what is less so, as we seek to share the best news with those around us.

My hope is that this will be an ongoing conversation—not simply feedback and response. God has chosen to use weak vessels with a foolish message to bring salvation to people. Let’s acknowledge our weakness and ask God to use us. Let’s support one another to keep working on things together.

God willing, I will raise a number of matters from our comments for ongoing thinking, discussion, and action. There may be many posts on this theme.

I’ve chosen to call these posts ‘making disciples’ rather than ‘evangelism’ or ‘outreach’ or ‘connecting’ so as to keep pointing us back to Jesus’ parting words in Matthew 20:18-20.

Then Jesus came to them and said, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.’

There is one thread of feedback that I’d like to respond to immediately.

We will keep the heating on. I will say it again, we will keep the heating on!

Yes, there are struggles with heating, acoustics, and other factors—but we want to be able to say to our friends, “Yes, I know it’s a school, but the heaters will be on—and wear a jacket just in case!”

Categories: Pastor's messageTags: , ,