I consulted with three different groups in July who are doing or planning to do ministry here in New Zealand. The wisdom and mistakes of 35 years of ministry comes in handy… for those who think to ask. I was very encouraged by the interactions. There are good and faithful people out there putting God’s Kingdom first and arranging their life around the lordship of Christ rather than just what earns them the most money.
The 1st group were seriously missional young people who are exploring how God works in the world beyond their own comfort zones.
The 2nd was a group of intentional young adults who are planning to move to NZ within a year to begin learning so they can start serving. You can’t arrive here and jump in with any hopes of being effective. They asked excellent questions. They left wide eyed and challenged. Three hours of talking on high hard benches in the university cafeteria surrounded by students from so many cultures and countries was good exposure to the realities of our global cities.
The 3 rd group are planting a new faith community in northwest Auckland called Church NW They’ve planted elsewhere before, yet they still thought it was worth asking for my insights. Wisdom often rests on or comes to those who ask questions.
If you'd just like photos skip to the end!
Begin with the end in mind.
If we plant a church, we may or may not make disciples.
If we make disciples, we will end up with a church.
Discipling is not Christian education, it’s not about WHAT people know.
Know & live in your community. “All theology is rooted in geography.” ― Eugene H. Peterson
Be carful of language, it reveals our hearts more than we realise. Us & them, non... defining people by what they are not. Be careful of being flippant.
“Don’t talk about us without us.” In every meeting, notice who is and is not represented. Ages, ethnicities, genders, marital status, faith traditions, personalities …
Hang out with people who disagree with you, and listen.
Ask good questions. Hone that skill.
Seek Wisdom. Be careful about taking positions on things. Persist in learning.
Work smarter, not harder. Expensify, Evernote, Create, Play, Seek & invest in real friendships
Discern & see the good news of Jesus in every conversation. Cultivate Gospel fluency
When do you shift from planting a church to pastoring a church?
It’s not primarily about the sermon or the music or the Children’s program or the...is it?
Always raise the mana of the person you’re with.
Be hard to offend. What offended or angered Jesus?
Never have your cellphone on the table when you’re with someone in a cafe or authentic conversation.
Pay attention to the wisdom of Mr Rogers. i.e. learn from everyone
Eph 3:16-19 in contrast to mere professional competency
I love doing ministry in an incarnational way where I walk with people on their faith journeys. I also love discipling and multiplying believers. Additionally, mentoring the next generations of disciplers and world changers thrills my heart!
Laidlaw College Counselling staff retreat in our home.
Jenga after dinner.
Dinner with friends from Wellington and Japan.
I was asked to share the communion meditation with Shore Community Church. The sermon was to be on Techno God. Children were staying in the service, so I attempted a bridging kinda approach and started with a selfie.
The need is real.
The opportunities are numerous.
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