Archive for March 2010

Think Missionary

March 24, 2010

I am re-reading Total Church – A Radical Reshaping Around Gospel and Community by Tim Chester and Steve Timmis. In the first chapter, “Why Gospel?”, the authors write words that each of us as Christ-followers should seriously contemplate.

******************************

“We sometimes ask people to imagine they are part of a church-planting team in a cross-cultural situation in some other part of the world:

  • What criteria would you use to decide where to live?
  • How would you approach secular employment?
  • What standard of living would you expect as pioneer missionaries?
  • What would you spend your time doing?
  • What opportunities would you be looking for?
  • What would your prayers be like?
  • What would you be trying to do with your new friends?
  • What kind of team would you want around you?
  • How would you conduct your meeting together?

We find it easier to be radical in our thinking when we transplant ourselves outside our current situation. But we are as much missionaries here and now as we would be if we were part of a cross-cultural team in another part of the world. Mission is central to us wherever we are. These are the kind of questions we should be asking wherever we go.”

(Total Church, page 33)

******************************

You can purchase Total Church here.

Advertisements

World Water Day

March 22, 2010

Today is “World Water Day.”

“World Water Day” is a day that is committed to informing self and others about the great need for clean, safe drinking water and sanitation that exists in our world today.

Water.org,  a non-profit organization that exists to provide clean, safe drinking water and sanitation to people in developing countries, helps us to understand how very critical it is that people have safe drinking water and clean sanitation. You can find extremely valuable facts, statistics, and information about these needs on their website here.

Some of the facts about water and sanitation that you’ll find on their website are:

  • Less than 1% of the world’s fresh water is readily accessible for direct human use
  • 3.575 million people die each year from water-related disease
  • 84% of water-related deaths are in children ages 0-14
  • 98% of water-related deaths occur in the developing world
  • An American taking a five-minute shower uses more water than the typical person living in a developing country slum uses in a whole day
  • Only 62% of the world population has access to improved sanitation – defined as a sanitation facility that ensures hygienic separation of human excreta from human contact
  • The majority of the illness in the world is cause by fecal matter
  • Every 15 seconds, a child dies from a water-related disease

As I am writing this post, I am remembering my trip to a developing nation almost two years ago. We were cautioned while there, and we heeded the cautions, to never drink water from water fountains or faucets, even in our hotel rooms. In fact, there were signs in the hotel bathrooms warning us that if we drank water from the tap, we needed to either boil it first or use water purification tablets to insure the water’s purity. Every- where I went in the country, I drank bottled water purchased in stores or from road-side vendors.

Having read the statistics on Water.org’s website, I have been convicted about my use, abuse, and waste of water.

Hopefully, and prayerfully, the information and conviction that I have received today will cause me to be more appreciative of and careful with the water that I have, and that I will do more to help ensure that the people of the world have one of the most essential necessities of life – safe, clean water.

Kids, Hugs, And The Bible

March 20, 2010

Here is a picture of most of the kids and workers who attended the Backyard Bible Club that my family I and ministered with this week.

Backyard Bible Club

Jordan Loop Housing Project

Bryan, Texas

March 15-19, 2010

How Great Is The Love

March 19, 2010

How Great Is The Love

This week my family and I have been involved in a spring break Backyard Bible Club in a low-income housing project in our city. The Club consists of a sack lunch for every child enrolled, music, Bible teaching, Scripture memory, games, crafts and plenty of hugs.

The Scripture theme for the week has been I John 3:1.

Above is a portion of the Scripture puzzle that was put together by one the small groups during the break-out teaching time on Wednesday.

It has been a blessed week.

That’s My King!

March 17, 2010

 ‘To whom then will you liken Me? That I should be his equal?’ says the Holy One.”

(Isaiah 41:25)

” … in His temple everything says, ‘Glory!’ ” (Psalm 29:9c)

********************

This message was preached by the late Shadrach Meshach Lockridge (1913-2000).

Lockridge had a long and blessed ministry. He pastored in Ennis, Texas from 1942-1952 before being called to the Calvary Baptist Church in San Diego, California. He served the Lord at Calvary from 1952 until he retired in 1993.

Interestingly, Lockridge was born in Robertson County, Texas. Robertson County is the county immediately north of where my family and I live, Brazos County.

Quick Notes

March 15, 2010

Here are three quick missional update notes:

  1. Devotion and Prayer Time at school – As of Friday the 12th, the last day of school before spring break, I still had not heard from school administrators about an assigned room in which to meet for a devotion and prayer time. The Lord did raise up a teacher who offered to let us meet in her room the first day back to school after break. Praise the Lord. (Please scroll down on this blog for previous posts on this ministry.)
  2. Backyard Bible Club – My family and I are going to be involved in a Backyard Bible Club in a low-income housing community each day this week (spring break) from 12-3pm. Sack lunches, games, music, Bible teaching, crafts, kids, and hugs. Pray that the Lord will open hearts and homes to the Gospel and that He will bind our family even closer together as a ministry team.
  3. Brunch Club – We are hosting a brunch at our home this coming Sunday morning the 21st. We have invited a number of unbelieving friends and the couple who host and facilitate the missional community that we have recently started attending. It is our desire to create a casual, non-threatening environment where we will do what we all do – eat (an everyday “rhythm”) – and develop meaningful relationships that will give us the opportunity to “Gospel into” people’s lives.

The Missional Church – A Simple Video

March 12, 2010

Here’s a simple visual presentation and explanation of what it means to be a missional church.

To expand on the video’s presentation, let me share Alan Hirsch’s definition of “missional church.” It is taken from the “Glossary of Key Terms” in his book, The Forgotten Ways, page 285.

A missional church is a church that defines itself, and organizes its life around, its real purpose as an agent of God’s mission to the world. In other words, the church’s true and authentic organizing principle is mission. When the church is in mission, it is the true church. The church itself is not only a product of that mission but is obligated and destined to extend it by whatever means possible. The mission of God flows directly through every believer and every community of faith that adheres to Jesus. To obstruct this is to block God’s purposes to and through His people.”

Does this video, this definition, define the local church that you pastor or serve, or that you are a member of?

Does this definition – of being missional, on mission with God in your life, home, and community – define you? Does it define me?

Missio Dei