The comfort and security of the Christian Cul-de-sac;
The comfort and security of the Christian Cul-de-sac; The church needs a course correction: Attractional Church; Incarnational Church.
The comfort and security of the Christian Cul-de-sac; The church needs a course correction: Attractional Church; Incarnational Church. Pastor Bob…“I want a DO OVER!”
“ F or much of my ministry career, I have been a workaholic and a churchaholic. My life has been woefully out of balance. I only really knew the neighbors on either side and right across the street from me because there was little margin in my life to socialize, much less to be a possible witness for my Lord. In coming to The Villages and to Live Oaks Church, I have sensed God telling me that it’s time for a do-over. Our Lord is the God of second chances. He gives us opportunities to learn from past mistakes and to try again, trusting Him to help us do better. At The Villages, through golf groups and weekly driveway gatherings, I’ve had the opportunity to meet and get to know the majority of the neighbors in my neighborhood of 87 homes. I have done prayer walks and have had open doors to pray for and with neighbors facing significant health issues. There have been fledgling spiritual conversations with a few and chances to plant seeds of the Gospel. My vision is to be both a Gospel gardener and God’s chaplain to my neighbors. God has given me an overflowing love for my neighbors as I pray for God to draw them one-by-one to Himself. I am eager to see how He continues to work in the hearts of these precious people.”
The comfort and security of the Christian Cul-de-sac; The church needs a course correction: Attractional Church; Incarnational Church. Pastor Bob…“I want a DO OVER!”; It is really a sin NOT to know your neighbors. Why ??
INTENTIONAL lifestyle evangelism; AUTHENTIC relationships with neighbors, friends and relatives; A Harvest of Souls for the Kingdom of God; Spiritual Growth for ALL. I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest. ~ John 4:35
You are the SALT of the earth…You are the LIGHT of the world…let your light shine (“and salt shake out”) before others, so that they (neighbors and friends) may see your good deeds and GLORIFY your Father in Heaven. ~ Matthew 5:13-14, 16
Salt must interact with the World, to be effective; Found THE LIGHT in Jesus; SHINE the LIGHT through our daily lives.
Salt Shaker is NOT an evangelistic program – it is a LIFESTYLE: The Villages: “Loving the Lifestyle” vs. Live Oaks: “Leveraging the Lifestyle… Having FUN with a PURPOSE.”
We can’t save anyone – work of the Holy Spirit; PRAYER is the KEY to success; Prayer often takes TIME to see results. OUR PART IN THE PROCESS Be AVAILABLE (for God to use) Be INTENTIONAL (in our daily life) Be EXPECTANT (that God will work through us)
We are surrounded by choices of activities everyday; Being INTENTIONAL means having fun with a purpose; Not just having faith…living your faith daily WHERE YOU ARE PLANTED; God has placed you strategically where you live (and have lived during your life).
Mordecai to Esther, “Who knows that you have come FOR SUCH A TIME AS THIS.” ~ Esther 4:14 Steven Barr, “You were BORN for this.” ~ Ephesians 2:10 GOD USES US TO IMPACT HIS KINGDOM: In our neighborhood; With our family and loved ones; On the golf course, pickleball court, softball field, social club, dog park, etc.
The Parable of the Good Samaritan ~ Luke 10:25-31 Lawyer asked, “Who IS my neighbor?” (passive voice) Two preachers passed by on the other side; Lowly Samaritan stopped to help the victim; Jesus asked: “Which one of the three WAS his neighbor?” (active voice) People in our area do not have a great deal of financial needs…but they have physical, emotional, and most importantly, SPIRITUAL NEEDS. The key again is PRAYER: Who needs help, Lord?
Keep this bookmark in your Bible and remember to pray everyday.
Being the Church vs. Going to Church; Course Correction for the American church; Be…Available, Intentional, Expectant; Loving the Lifestyle vs. Leveraging the Lifestyle; Jesus Challenge: Be…SALT and LIGHT ~ Matthew 5:13-14, 16
Bloom where GOD planted YOU; Having FUN with a PURPOSE; Authentic Relationships / Authentic Compassion; One Tool in the Toolbox; Salt Shaker PRAYER.
Goal is to build things by connecting the pieces; CONNECT with other people (authentically); Prayer is important in identifying potential LEGO friends. LEGO towers of connection… multi-layer connections How well do your know your neighbors? Let’s do a little exercise.
Capacity is crucial; Finite number of connection points (allow Holy Spirit to connect); You will have lots of friends, but fewer connections (depth);
Neighborhood; Region of Country (can be multiple places in our world today); Hobbies, sports, activities. What are the CONNECTION POINTS in The Villages or your community? Let’s make a list.
Salt and Light work best when seasoned with GRACE; Colossians 4:4-6 is a primer on healthy relationships: Pray persistently (vs. 4); Act wisely (vs. 5); Talk gracefully (vs. 6).
Don’t expect them to! (God has a lot of work to do yet); Let them BE who they ARE! And be who YOU are (with grace); Love them like they are (let God do the changing); Pray for them, and with them – when you can.
Authentic friendship vs. my assignment from God; Remember…you have common interests; Pray for their salvation, BUT…leave the conversion to God; Tell your story! Look for natural opportunities.
What if my friend wants nothing to do with God or the church? Hard answer – Love them anyway; Perhaps God has placed you where you need to be so that your relationship with them, allows you to impact the lives of others; DEATH BED conversions DO OCCUR sometimes. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. ~ Romans 12:12
What thoughts would you like to share regarding our mission?
Jesus’ challenge to Believers: BE Salt and Light ~ Sermon on the Mount Pastor Bob’s DO OVER; Goals: Intentional Lifestyle and Authentic Relationships; Loving the Lifestyle vs. Leveraging the Lifestyle = Having FUN with a PURPOSE; One tool in the toolbox = PRAYER Our part = BE Available, BE Intentional, BE Expectant.
Bloom WHERE you are PLANTED! LEGO’s are fun! Power of common interests… lots of friends, fewer connections; SALT + LIGHT, Plus GRACE ~ Colossians 4:4-6 Friends, not Projects; Look for natural opportunities to tell your story.
Going into the world: In the past we expected non-believers to come to us (the church); Jesus’ model in scripture is to GO TO THEM (the people). Therefore, GO and MAKE DICIPLES of all nations… ~ Matthew 28:18
Loving the Holy Huddle: People act and think like us; Easier to act and think like a Christian.
“Everyday they continued to meet together IN THE TEMPLE COURTS. They broke bread together and ate together with glad and sincere hearts” ~ Acts 2:46 “One day Peter and John were GOING DOWN TO THE TEMPLE at the time of prayer.” ~ Acts 3:1
“But the Pharisee’s and the teachers of the law complained, “why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners? Jesus answered them, “it is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” ~ Luke 5:30-32 What is OUR mission assignment?
Key to come and see today is ON RAMPS: Church opportunities for ON RAMPS and then…; Personal opportunities for ON RAMPS; Allows seeking with little risk and at the seeker’s own pace. God reveals the best ON RAMPS through prayer…ON RAMPS that lead to Eternal Life (Highway to Heaven). Let’s identify potential ON RAMPS at Live Oaks. How about personal ON RAMPS you can provide?
Moving from an evangelistic outreach to a MOVEMENT of God; “Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders (non-believers). Make the most of every opportunity.” ~ Colossians 4:5 Complexity of timing (sharing not shoving).
People want to know you care before they allow you to share; Power of grace in a relationship; “Fess-up when you mess-up.” Let’s do an exercise in “telling your story.”
Everyone has a story of their relationship with Jesus; Damascus Road or Emmaus Road? No story…no faith? (Religion is NOT Relationship) Elevator Speech = told in simple manner in short period of time. Easy Outline 1.My life before Jesus; 2.The point I grasped what Jesus did for me on Calvary; 3.My life since accepting the “finished work” of Jesus.
“They will be called Oaks of Righteousness, A planting of the Lord for the display of His splendor.”
A Salt Shaker adding beautiful flavor to life! A LEGO connecting two people in a Good Match! A Light reflecting THE LIGHT of the World! An Oak standing firm in all of life’s circumstances! A DISPLAY OF GOD’S SPLENDOR in your mission field/community.
Hearing seven wonderful words: “ Well done, my good and faithful servant.”
Which tree do you want to reflect your life? Or