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I my heart of hearts I wish that the CRC in this late stage of her decreasing in members, lack of new converts, could resort to a "simple" procedure:   The next 10 years (or whatever # is set) the CRC is going to urge all congregations to do two things.  1.  Education our children and youth in her biblical doctrines, and 2. Actively engage the congregation in outreach to her local community.

Then let's "forget" all the political posturing, cultural engaging that is consuming the passions of so many members and churches.

Back to the basics for the sake of the kingdom of our Lord Jesus.

 

To use an analogy:  It seems to me that the CRC is facing a bottom of the ninth inning and we are trailing 4-7 with 2 outs.     

 

 

Thanks Wendy. Andrew has already replied with much insight.   

Janice and I will read all the replies we get from The Network.  

God is so richly rewarding our work here that we stand in awe. Yet we want to be "wise as serpents and innocent as doves."     

Until then,

gil 

Thank you for your insightful and very helpful response. I have gotten similar and also helpful responses from others (like Anthony Systema in Uganda who teaches at the theological school there). He was in the past on campus here at RITT (Ref. Institute for Theol Training) and was considering a teaching position. But he saw that the RCEA was "trapped" (my word, not his) in thinking that outside Kenya $ would run the theological school.

Now Janice and I will have to decide what we do with the information we have received from you, Anthony, and a few others. I will WAIT on it for a few weeks. Waiting clears my mind. It also helps me see the vision, and renews my faith.

Then I think I will write a paper explaining what I have learned in waiting. I will not include any names (yours or Anthonys) in my paper. I plan to share it with both the staff here, and the leaders of the RCEA (which is in Eldoret, 25 kilometers away). Then J. and I will decide if we return in January 2021.

ThX again,

gilbert kamps

I have gleaned so much for my leading of other from Simon Sinek's START WITH WHY

I would encourage all my minister colleagues, and other leaders to ponder this books contents.

I so enjoyed reading START WITH WHY   by Simen Sinek.

I found that through the insights of this book, I was able to apply it to my ministry, bigtime.

Good stuff, sure. But, like so much of what we do as pastors, Jim's article analyzes the Acts scene...and prescribes this for our churches.

BUT, unless individual people are passionate about seeing their own lives powerfully used by the Spirit in the lives of lost people....our congregations will not be missional, much.

So I would ask all readers of this post: Do you have the names of at least 5 persons in your purse or wallet whom you are pleading with Father to let you move them or lead them to Christ?
When you look at your schedule do you have at least 20% of your weekly labors such that you are networking in the community intentionally....to build relationships with lost people?

How many times in the last 6 months has someone, of the same gender, asked you: "Can I speak to you about how you are doing spiritually?"
Have you asked that question of others?

Until we lead our members of the church God entrusted to our leadership to live this way.....Our churches will not change.

Change starts with me....and then telling stories to the folks of the church

I appreciate what Nate wrote -- about patience etc.

However, I think his whole blog article misses the point.  Discipleship making is not a matter of getting the right tool, finding the right approach.     Biblical discipleship, it seems to me, is much more radical and exciting.   It amounts to something like this:  

There is a vibrant community, rooted in tradition, practicing scripture-informed habits:  worship, sacraments, welcoming strangers.  This community is not designed to meet the perceived needs of the world.  rather this community lives the truth, practices the truth.  Is a community at heart that is not of this world but in it.    this community in its evangelism zeal practices 2 traits:  invitational and subversive.     We invite people to become part of a community that they can see is different than the world.

The focus of "Slow or Fast" in terms of making disciples smacks too much of the culture of consumerism:  we measure 'success" by how we perform.

Let's rethink evangelism with a Biblical mind:  a living, healthy community of folks whose social interaction displays to the world a "people set apart."

 

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