If you have been following my Blog then you know something about the Unleash conference we went to BUT I am sure you are still a little in the dark. So here is the breakdown. There is an eight year old church near Greenville South Carolina that is bumping 6000 people on Sundays. This is awesome due to the fact that they are not in a major metropolitan area. They actually have less people that we have in the Greenville area. About 3 times more people in fact. New Spring church loved what God was/is doing in their town church and wanted to share it with others. Intro Unleash, a conference on church growth by reaching people for Christ. They are indeed reaching people for Jesus and it was a thrill to see how they go about ministry.
I promised you some “take home” from this conference so here you go:
1] I, Claude Cannon, am useless to Discovery Church. So is Jason Ebeling, Davey Kolk, Randy, Brad, Sheila, Lora, Kim, Derek...everyone serving here are useless to Gods kingdom UNTIL we lay down OUR lives and take on HIS LIFE. You see, I am a sinful, prideful fool that wants to do things to impress people so they will like me (we all are). But what God needs is for me to lay all that down and work ,my best, for Him. Not for me.
2] the more we think we “got it figured out”, the less we rely on God. He is the great “I AM” and too often we try to take on that title ourselves. Here are some examples: “I am” going to work on this problem! “I am” doing my best! “I am” only one person! “I am” providing for my family! “I am” going to kick this bad habit. You see how easy it is to take the title “I Am” from God? Here is how the above statements should play out: “I am” trusting God to help me with this problem! “I am” doing the best I can with the gifts God has given me! “I am” part of Gods family! God is allowing me a paying job and puts food on my table! With Gods help, I can kick this habit.
3] Sometimes we are working to hard to recognize and celebrate people coming to Jesus. We get sidetracked buy the task and forget about the vision and the big commission. Think about the last time you helped with VBS, how much time was spent on decorating? How much on prayer? Yeap that so! This year when you are looking for volunteers make sure you ask for a prayer team. How easy is it for us to get off the trail on goose chases?
4] we often celebrate the wrong things. We are thrilled a lot of people showed up but miss that one that moved a little closer to God that day. We measure success by our efforts and not His outcome.
5] Pastors, your sheep WANT to leave. you cannot make them all happy and that is NOT what we are called to do. We are called to lead them. Sometimes this will take them where they do NOT want to go. If you open the gate in a field of sheep...they will leave. No matter how good a shepherd is, the sheep want to do what THEY want to do and not what the shepherd wants them to do. We just need to help them realize there is something better for them on the right side of the fence.
Thats all for now, I have more but I am losing my short attention spanners, hey Jim, I miss you...just kidding bro!
This got stared on my google reader. Thanks for the round up.
I really enjoyed reading this and it gives you a lot to think about. You make some great points and I think it's something we all need to pray about. Thanks for the great Blog Claude!
Thanks Claude...things I think we all need to be reminded of on occasion to not lose sight of the bigger picture here and not get caught up in the little details.
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