Start with a commitment to consistently live the ways of Jesus together while you converse around four bottom-line questions for the purpose of drawing some transformational conclusions.
One, what did the Head of the church intend for the ones He called â€œchurch?â€
Two, who is church?
Three, why is church?
Four, where is church?
Jesus made His intention clear â€“ â€œAs the Father has sent Me, so I am sending youâ€ (John 20:21). The church is a people unified-around-Jesus, sent-by-Jesus, and committed-to-live-the-ways-of-Jesus-with-each-other-and-among-the-lost. They exist for the purpose of cultivating and living out the Gospel of reconciliation everyday to the ends of the earth in hopes of seeing â€œon earth as it is in heaven.â€
â€œTo the ends of the earthâ€ implies more than just the nations abroad. It includes how the church exists in the everyday in homes, in neighborhoods, in the marketplace, throughout our cities, and around the world. The conclusions that those missional community leaders-in-training reach through these conversations will determine what they cultivate into the missional community they lead and therefore have influence on what blossoms within and out of their missional community.
Next, converse about those four questions over time through the course of a season or two or three or four (as the Spirit leads), and donâ€™t quickly draw conclusions. See the conclusions happen pragmatically among you. Donâ€™t let them remain as hypotheses or ideology, for philosophical conclusions alone have a tendency of stagnating in the head instead of resulting in the daily.
The conversation that will center around those questions will not happen in a two-hour session. Rather, it must occur as the trainer is doing life with the trainees, over time, over coffee, amidst their various spheres of influence, through ups and downs, together. The goal is that the trainees will model this life-together style with those people they disciple (aka, learn and live the ways of Jesus with). And then those they disciples will model it with those they disciple. And then those they disciple…well, you get the cyclical picture.
Finally, here are 4 ways to be intentional:
1. PRAY, but not that someone else might change or that your city might change. Pray to be cultivators of change who seek Godâ€™s Spirit to grant them wisdom on specific ways to love their spouses, neighbors, co-workers, cities, and world.
2. CONNECT, but not just with one another and not just by inviting â€œthe lostâ€ to a â€œchurch gatheringâ€ or to a â€œchurch eventâ€ that you plan. Rather, connect over real life and common interests so that others can connect with you. Then, the trainer can coach the trainees as they talk with and walk with others in the midst of real life.
3. SERVE together, at least one way locally and one way globally, obviously along with the ways you each are serving the people you encounter in the daily. As you serve together, you will be able to invite â€œthe lostâ€ to serve with you. This is an engaging way for them to experience the ways of Jesus alive in you as they have already experienced through the way that you are their friend.
4. As they see this in the everyday and as they witness the beyond-self purposes of your life, they will begin to LEARN AND LIVE THE WAYS OF JESUS with you (aka be made to be disciples).
If that happens, then Missional Community leaders will have been trained, solely based upon the fact that new Missional Communities will have blossomed right in front of you in the middle of life together between trainer and trainees. Then, release and repeat.
We’re giving away 10 copies of Jason’s book, Live Sent! In his new book, due out April 5, 2011, he helps the reader see how giving yourself away in the daily means being to other people the letter of Godâ€™s love that has been written on our hearts.
How to Enter:
1. Share this post on your Facebook page, by clicking the Facebook “Share” button OR Tweet this post from Twitter account, by clicking the Tweet” button.
2. Leave a comment on THIS BLOG POST that: 1) Tells us why you want a copy of the book (be creative!) and 2) Lets us know that you shared or tweeted this post. You must include BOTH steps!
You may share on Facebook and Tweet, as two separate entries. You must leave a comment.
Deadline Extended to Sunday!
You must enter by 11:59pm (CST), Sunday, March 20th. Winners will be announced Monday, March 21st, with instructions on how to claim your copy.
Jason Dukes has been married to his beautiful wife, Jennifer, for 12 years. They have five amazing kids â€“ Caleb, Katey, Abby, Ella, and Noah. Jason serves on leadership team with a local expression of the church his wife and he helped to start in February 2004 called Westpoint Church – a people who are being the church together in the Winter Garden, FL area. Along with the Westpoint team, Jason helped start House Blend Cafe, the Reproducing Churches Network, the Church of West Orange, and the online cause site Humanity Beautiful. He wrote the book LIVE SENT: you are a letter, published in September 2009 with a 2nd edition to be released in April 2011. You can follow Jason on twitter via @JasonCDukes or read his blog at JasonCDukes.com. Twitter: @JasonCDukes.
Join in the Conversation
What do you like about Jason model of training? What challenges you? Join the conversation in the comment section belowâ€¦