Friday, November 11, 2016

Are You Playing It SAFE?

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After I preached the four points I have written about this week in Thoughts by Scott I gave some of the explanation as to my frustrations in my leadership over the 2016 calendar year.  Before I share that information, you need to understand what had transpired during last week.  Kristy and I had the privilege to attend the 2016 Church Revitalization Conference.  The conference gave me a lot of information which helped me identify and address some of my short-comings as a leader this year.  I wish to share some of those thoughts with you now.  One of the speakers was Dr. Steve Smith and he shared the following three quotes:

A healthy vision is rooted in INTIMACY with God.

And a healthy vision leads the people of God seeing the LOST with COMPASSION.

When we see the lost with compassion because of our vision we will be INTENTIONAL about building relationships with the lost.

Tim Staley was also a speaker and he shared the following quote:

We don’t NEED to reach the lost, but rather we have the OPPORTUNITY to reach the lost.

As I thought about this quote I summarized and asked the following.  For too many of us we don’t look at the PRIVILEGE we have in reaching the lost.  You GET TO do this, now will you?

Dr. Tom Cheyney was yet another speaker and he shared the following.

Too many churches are playing it safe and safe stands for:

Stagnant and souring over the state of the church.
Accustomed to the stale climate of little success.
Faced with few options toward renewal unless you break free.
Entrenched in the past and holden of previous times of change.

The final speaker I wish to quote was Bill Easum and he shared with us from Matthew 9:36-38.  He asked us to write out four words from that passage of Scripture that best describe this passage.  He went on to explain that he has done this very assignment for years throughout the country and typically (because there are always exceptions) there are two sets of four given.  The first set is:

Compassion, Helpless, Shepherd, Pray 

The people who write those four words are typically internally focused and more often than not in a church that is dying.  The second set of four given is:

Compassion, Pray, Harvest, Send

The people who write those four words are typically externally focused and more often than not in a church that is growing.  I no longer wish to lead from a perspective of playing it safe.  We must live by faith and turn our attention to the reaching of the lost world.  It is my prayer you will join me in this endeavor.

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