Friday, July 27, 2007

Vision For Catalyst France (pt 5)

. . . to plant churches where French people have an opportunity to see the Gospel lived out in the lives of transformed believers, hear the message of Christ clearly communicated in an exciting and relevant way, and experience lasting life-change through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

Experiencing It

This part of the vision is why we do what we do. It is how we Define Our Win; how we know we are accomplishing the Great Commission. Seeing and hearing life-change through Jesus Christ is not enough if the unchurched never experience it.

Jesus said, "I came that you might have life, and have it to the full" (John 10:10) Jesus did not die so that we could become better rule followers. He died so that we might live. If we teach the people all there is to know about the Bible and morality but fail to lead them to experience new life in Christ we have not fulfilled our vision.

Paul said, "if any man is in Christ he is a new creation" (2 Cor 5:17). While new life is the goal, it is also a means. When asked why people don't go to church, the top reasons they give is that they believe it is boring or irrelevant. I think that one of the biggest reasons people go to church on the invitation of a friend is because they see something in that friend's life that is different. I think that many people who don't believe in Jesus after their first visit to a church come back because they see something different in the people at that church.

It's really a circular thing. If we can point the way (or get out the way) for people to experience a life changing relationship with Jesus Christ, they will become the best reason for others to find that same life changing relationship.

How about your church? What would an unchurched person see? What would they hear? Would they get it? Would they come back even if they didn't get it? Is life change obvious to your guests?

Love to hear your thoughts. . .

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