So Long...Farewell...Auf Wiedershen...Good-bye

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Here I am at the end of my six month stint of being a Network guide. I’ve put off the writing of my last blog because I haven’t been sure of what to say. My mind goes in all sorts of different directions, but I’ve narrowed my thoughts down to two.

First, thank-you! I am thankful for your partnership in the gospel. Small groups are the church in action as we spur one another on in good deeds, care for one another, grow in our knowledge and love for the Lord and just plain enjoy one another. Thank-you for your faithful preparation to lead these groups, for inviting new people into your groups and going through the frustrations that come when dealing with a bunch of people. Your role as shepherd to the little flock of sheep God has given you is important to Him and doesn’t go un-noticed.

There is a second, however. It goes back to Matthew 28:19, Therefore  go, and make disciples of all nations baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. Please never forget that yes, we are to be concerned with teaching and growing those who are already Christ followers, but that’s incomplete. We are to go and make new disciples. If all we’re doing is focusing discipleship on growing up Christians, we’re so missing what Jesus has commissioned us to do.  I just heard that 60 – 90% of the people in our communities are not in a relationship with Jesus, and that percentage is on the rise. If we don’t make new disciples, but only design our groups to grow up those who are already disciples, we’re missing the missional challenge of our age.

Allen Kleine Deters will be our next Network Guide. I’m sure he’ll bring us into fresh and challenging thoughts. I look forward to learning from him and others as I now become a follower of this site. What an adventure this Christian life is and I’m glad to be on it with good folk like you. And let’s not forget the end of the Great Commission; And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age. 

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Participant

Ruth, you have been an inspiration on this page.  I think I speak for many who have appreciated your openness to challenge us and encourage us to step out in faith being faithful in God's mission of reaching others and discipling others within the context of small groups.

May God richly continue to bless you in your roles in Small Group Ministry within the CRC.  I look forward to continuing the conversations through your comments and insights.

Blessings to you.

Allen