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Dads, You are heroes. It’s time to step up!

Dads,  You are heroes.  It’s time to step up!  

We started weekly worship gatherings in a new church about a year ago.  For three years we’ve been reaching out to people in neighborhoods, bars, and parks. We’ve heard countless stories of brokenness. It usually starts with, “My Dad never…” Most people, especially the men we’ve met, who are far from Jesus and the church, have serious daddy issues. We hear of how most these young men never had their dad’s marry/or remain married to their moms. Their dad was never there growing up. Their dad never said, “I love you” or “I’m proud of you.” Their dads never taught them what it was like to be a man.   A growing number of people we’ve met never knew their dads at all.

If you’re a dad, you are a hero. Your kid, even if he’s 55 and you’re 72, still yearns for your presence, your approval, your love. You are either going to give them those things and prove to him that you’re the hero he always thought you were. Or you’re going to show him you’re more like a villain…and more likely he’ll think it’s because of him, that he’s not worthy of a hero’s love.

There’s some good news: It is never too late to step up and make things right.

Here’s even better news: Jesus can redeem the lost and broken years. With the help of his power, by faith in him, and the leading and directing of his Spirit we can change. God’s Spirit can transform our hearts and lead us to repent to our children in the ways we’ve wronged them. His Spirit can help us become the men and dads were are called to be. God can transform our children’s hearts to forgive us as well.

Here’s the best news: Jesus is a perfect father on our behalf who always did what was best for his children, who was always nearby, who always showed unconditional love and approval. He was the perfect father in your stead to your children. He was looking out for you children even when you weren’t. He did everything necessary to be with his children, to protect them from danger and provide for them a future.  Through faith in Jesus, His perfect record is your’s before the father in heaven.  You are guiltless for all the ways you’ve wronged your children and for every good thing you did not do for them.  You have a Father in heaven who loved you children in your stead, and, just as sweet, you have a Father in heaven who loves you.

Let’s live in that love, men!

 

Video found here

Starting “Church Starting” churches

Here’s a great article from Carol Davis on why some churches start new churches and why most never reproduce”

‘I have a question I’ve been wanting to ask you for four years,’ I said to Charles Brock, author of the
Practice and Principles of Indigenous Church Planting, when I met him in the Philippines a few years
ago. ‘You plant churches rapidly, they produce leadership from within, they are not dependent on
outside funding and they reproduce.’

‘I know others plant churches in these same areas. It takes years, the churches stay dependent on
outside resourcing, they import leadership, they say, because poverty has destroyed the psyche of
the people and they are not leadership quality. These churches do not reproduce.’

“I want to know why you can do it and they can’t.”

Read more of Carol Davis’ article here.

Free Church Graphics

I ran into a pretty great site called, Church Creatives.  They have some great resources and tutorials on graphics and video side of the church.  Here is their list of free church graphics:

See more….

 

picture found here

Identity: God

Identity.God

So we recently did a series at our new church in Jackson, Mo, The Exchange Community called Identity.  Here are the messages from that series.

Identity: Father

Identity: Son

Identity: Spirit

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We at The Exchange Community are taking a number of our MC leaders and members down to Jonesboro.  We’ve learned a lot from Jeff, Soma, and the GCm Collective.  So we thought we’d share this great opportunity.  Here is what is publicized about the training:

We believe that communities centered around mission are the heart of what God has called His Church to be and do. Soma has helped developed successful missional communities all around the world. This one-day training with Jeff Vanderstelt will tackle the nuts and bolts of living and leading missional communities. Our recent One Day focused on the “Why” and “What”. This training will focus on “How”…

  • How to make disciples with your family
  • How to love and bless your neighbors
  • How to live everyday life with gospel intentionality
  • How to make disciples out of the overflow of the gospel
  • How to listen and follow the Spirit for fruitful mission

MEET JEFF VANDERSTELT

Jeff Vanderstelt

Jeff Vanderstelt is one of the leaders of Soma Tacoma, a multi-expression, church-planting church. He is the Visionary Leader of Soma, a family of churches spread throughout North America. Jeff is married to Jayne and together they love and shepherd their three children in gospel, life, and mission.

DETAILS

This event will take place on Saturday from 9am-4pm at Fellowship Jonesboro, with registration from 8–9am.

The cost is: $49/individual or $69/couple and includes lunch.

Please register for this event by 10am, Friday September 13.

You can register at Eventbrite

Great Missional Community Resource: Soma Fast Track Training

I’ve learned a whole heck of a lot from Soma Communities, on Church Planting, Sharing the Gospel, and missional communities that we are implementing in the creation of The Exchange Community in Jackson, Mo.  Recently Soma did a fast track training for their missional community leaders.  This is some great material to go through if you’re leading a missional community or are interested in starting a missional community

Here’s the links to Soma’s Fast Track Training Audio/Video and their notes:

1. The Story of God // Caesar Kalinowski

The Story of God Training Videos One & Two

2. Vision for Missional Communities // Jeff Vanderstelt

Notes & Assignments

Session 1 Audio

Session 2 Audio

3. Gospel, Power & Purpose // Jeff Vanderstelt

Notes & Assignments

Session 1 Audio

Session 2 Audio

4. Gospel DNA // Jeff Vanderstelt & Abe Meysenburg 

Notes & Assignments

Session 1 Audio

Session 2 Audio

5. Gospel in Everyday Rhythms // Jeff Vanderstelt

Notes & Assignments

Session 1 Audio

Session 2 Audio

6. Gospel Fluency // Jeff Vanderstelt

Notes & Assignments

7. Creating a Disciple-Making Enviroment // Jeff Vanderstelt

Notes & Assignments

Session 1 Audio

Session 2 Audio

8. Gospel Shepherding // Abe Meysenburg 

DNA Guide // Your Story, God’s Story

Session 1 Audio

Session 2 Audio

9. Missional Community Covenant // Jeff Vanderstelt  

MC Covenant Example

Session 1 Audio

Session 2 Audio

10.  Spirit Led Life // Jeff Vanderstelt 

Notes & Assignments 

Session 1 Audio

Session 2 Audio

Session 3 Audio

11.  Spiritual Warfare // Jeff Vanderstelt

Session 1 Audio

Session 2 Audio

Here’s a link to all of their materials

Picture found here along with the post: Ten Reasons Missional Communities Fail

5 Ways to Be Missional This Labor Day

Labor day is one of those days of rest and rejuvenation.  For our Nation its a yearly rhythm of rest that we all enjoy, but can also be leveraged for gospel purposes.  Below are 5 ways you can be missional this Labor Day

  1. Hold a neighborhood barbeque.  Invite everyone on the block.  If you’ve never done this in your neighborhood, don’t ask them to bring all the food.  Partner with a few members of your Missional Community or Small group to pay for the meal.  For those who have participated in the past, encourage them to partner with you in bringing a side dish to share.
  2. If you own a boat or have a place at the lake, Labor Day is a great day for a little cross-pollination.  Invite a couple from your Missional Community and invite another couple who are unchurched or dechurched.  It’s a great time to introduce friends and build trust between your Christian community and those who don’t yet believe.
  3. Invite your unchurched friends to join you and another Christian in Something you love.  If you love to camp or fish.  If you just take the opportunity of Labor Day to hit up a good matinée and some lunch, invite unchurched this is another great opportunity for cross-pollination and trust building.
  4. Show care to first responders.  A lot of people have Labor Day off.  Some work it every year.  Show love to your first responders.  Bring by food or gift packages for your firemen or police officers.  Talk to the Fire chief or police chief and see if your Missional Community, Small Group, or church can set up some grills and serve them a meal.
  5. If school doesn’t start for your community until after Labor Day, serve the underprivileged about to go back to school.  Pay a beautician or barber to come in and offer free haircuts.  Collect and hand out backpacks and school supplies.

 

You also might like:

6 Ways to be Missional This Superbowl

4  Ways to be Missional This Easter

9 Ways to be Missional This Thanksgiving

13 Ways to be Missional This Halloween

7 Ways to be Missional This Christmas

Picture found here

Dealing with Pride in Disciple Making

Here’s a great short video from David Platt and Multiply on how pride sneaks into our disciple making.

 

Questions:

  • What suprises you about what he says concerning pride?
  • Can Pride really be an issue when we doubt our own abilities?

I wonder If Sunday School Is Destroying Our Kids

The Bible is not primarily a story about you!  It’s a Story about Jesus.  Check out this article from Belief’s of the Heart:

“Several years ago I met with a woman distraught by her son’s rejection of Christianity.

She said, “I did everything I could to raise him right. I taught him to be like the ‘heroes of faith,’ with the faithfulness of Abraham, the goodness of Joseph, the pure heart of David, and the obedience of Esther.”

She wondered why he rejected Christianity.

I wondered why it took him so long.

Here is how we destroy the gospel message

Look at almost any Sunday school curriculum. You’ll find:

  • Abraham was faithful, and God made him the father of a nation. So be faithful like Abraham.
  • Joseph was a good little boy (unlike his “bad” brothers), and God made him Prime Minister of Egypt. So be good like Joseph.
  • David had a pure heart (unlike his brothers), and God made him King of Israel. So have a pure heart like David.
  • Esther was an obedient girl. God made her Queen of Persia and she saved God’s people. So be obedient like Esther.
  • Finally, if we fail to be good, Jesus will forgive us (a “P.S.” tacked onto the end).

What’s so bad about these Sunday school lessons?

Nothing really. Except that they lie about God, they lie about these “heroes of the faith,” they lie about the Bible, and they lie about the gospel….”
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