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2023 5&6

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작성자 TI 조회 709 작성일 23-05-01 23:16

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Go and make disciples
of all nations!


-Matt 28:19 NIV-
May and June, 2023
Tentmaker's story

Overcoming Barriers to Discipleship
 


               by Phill Sandahl 
           from tentmaking today

    Too often I hear people say that tentmaking can’t work. A person who works all day at his job will not be able to do an adequate job of ministry in his remaining hours of the day. “He will burn out.” 

    They liken it to the image of a person who is burning his candle at both ends. It just isn’t practical, they say. The problem is that they do not have a proper understanding of the ministry (role) of a tentmaker. 

  • Bring the presence of the Kingdom of God to people who have not experienced it. 
  • Build relationships. 
  • Show God’s love and his desire (plan) for all mankind. 

    Properly understood tentmaking, or disciple-making, if you prefer, is a natural outcome of living out your faith intentionally. Several years back I came across a video on disciple-making which makes it so clear. I recommend watching and listening carefully to understand what the teachers are saying. 
 

From a Mindset of Additional, to Intentional 

    Too often we overcomplicate things. Sharing one’s faith should be as natural as eating ice cream. As Ceasar Kowlinowski says in the video, “We need to move from a mindset of additional to one of intentional.” It is the practice of letting Christ shine through in the rhythm of things we do every day anyway. 

    The presenters suggest 6 areas of life where we can impact for the Gospel through our mere presence. We already do these things. We just need to be intentional about glorifying God as we do them. “Not additional, intentional.”  
 

Rhythms of Life 

    You are already doing these rhythms of life. Recognize them and fit them into your life: 

  • Know the story – we all have a story, but is it part of God’s story? 
  • Celebrate – life is lived in a rhythm of celebration, so we need to join those celebrations and bring the “better wine.”  
  • Listen – we are always listening to someone, but are we listening to God? 
  • Bless – ask the spirit who in your life you can bless each week through word, action, or gift. 
  • Eat – we’re already eating 21 meals per week. Use some of those to connect with people to make disciples. We’re eating anyway, let’s eat with intention. 
  • ReCreate – rest in Christ’s completed work, and out of that we create beauty. 

    I hope by now you are anxious to know what I am talking about and take a few minutes to watch the video. If you don’t have 15 minutes, start from 3:50 to 9:00. https://vergenetwork.org/lp/top-3-disciplemaking-barriers/?inf_contact_key=ed88d79808cedd32ff8a6266662490cd 

    Let me add one more to the list. Show up at work and work as unto the Lord. This is where you spend the greatest amount of your time. It is also the place where you are most likely to run into people you will not meet at church. It is where the leaven of the Kingdom of God will have its greatest effect.  
 

You Already Have What It Takes 

    Wait a minute. What’s so special about what Ceasar is saying? There are no special techniques to win people over. There is no intensive Bible School training required. In fact, just about every believer could do this today. BINGO! You got it. But are they? More importantly, are YOU? You may not be called to go overseas and to cross cultural barriers, but you too can be a disciple maker. What’s more, you don’t have to give up your vocation and the things you normally do to become one. 

    BUT WAIT… there’s more. What if you heard a small whisper to go tell the nations and you thought it was too big a step? Or, have you wondered what it would be like to live in another part of the world where life is different?  
 

The Challenge 

    Do you have what it takes? Curious? Global InTENT-USA has a 1-minute online assessment to see if you have the right stuff.

Tentmaker's book

42 Seconds: The Jesus Model for Everyday Interactions
– a Book Review 
 




              by Phill Sandahl 
           from tentmaking today

    The title immediately caught my eye. I began to imagine what the content of the book was going to be. I knew I wanted to see this author’s take on the subject. I have read other materials by Carl Medearis. I like his style and his approach. I knew I was in for a treat. He did not disappoint. 
 

    The book is a quick read. A mere 150 pages.  
 

    From the title I knew we were going to focus on the practices of our Master, Jesus himself, and not the clever schemes marketing people draw up to attract people to our teachings. It’s not really our teachings anyway, nor should it be. It is Jesus who came to show us about God and the desire of His heart. His desire that we participate in His Kingdom. 
 

Introducing Jesus

    If our purpose is to introduce people to Jesus, why not begin with the man himself showing us how he wants to be seen. Logical, No? 

    I found the book at once, practical and challenging. The principles are so simple. And yet, we sometimes struggle to follow the Master’s lead. We want something more sophisticated, more complex. 
 

What Can You Do in 42 Seconds?

    The title comes from Medearis’ analysis that many times Jesus’ encounters with people in the Bible were very short. Yet he had lasting and profound impact on their lives. Many times 42 seconds is all we get. 42 seconds! What can we accomplish of great importance in such a short time? For introverts it may sound like a godsend. You don’t have to engage in long discourses to be able to make a contribution to the Kingdom. 

    Medearas shows a number of simple practices Jesus used to show God’s love and lead them to transformed lives. Once the disciple-maker learns these practices he will become very effective in touching the lives of others for the Kingdom. These activities a simple and practical. 

    To summarize the essence of the book teaches how to be more like Jesus. When we do, we connect people with the Kingdom of God. The author not only shows you from scripture how this works but includes contemporary stories of ordinary people following the practices of Jesus and the amazing results that follow. 
 

Intentionally Being Like Jesus

    Medearis sums it all up,

“… in this main course, we’ve considered what it looks like to be intentional about being transformed into Jesus’ likeness so that we can be his powerful and loving presence in this world that needs him. We’ve been challenged to take an honest look at how we relate to Jesus. Do we believe what he believed and live with integrity? Do we spend the time to really know him, not just about him? Do we really believe that his power to heal resides in us? (He did say we would do greater works than he did.) And finally, do we live each day acting and interacting with the awareness that Jesus—and his will—matters more than absolutely anything?” 

42 SECONDS, PAGE. 142  


42 Seconds: The Jesus Model for Everyday Interactions, by Carl Medearis 


The Invasive Kingdom
– a Book Review  





              by Phill Sandahl 
           from tentmaking today

    “God wants His people circulating among humanity ushering in His Kingdom and unleashing the power of His love!” [p. 40] 

    This is the premise for Lyn’s book The Invasive Kingdom. The sub-title foreshadows the methodology he proposes – transforming today’s believers into marketplace ministers. The book makes his case and shows the way it can happen. 

    Lyn argues, “A proper biblical understanding is that all believers have a calling to leverage their vocation (their work) for the glory of God.” [p. 228] 
 

Workplace as a Gateway 

    The workplace is the gateway to bringing the Kingdom of God to parts of the world where He is not known. Believers are called to be HIS ambassadors to bring the Good News and take back lost territory. Lyn points out “…the laws, culture and destiny of every nation is shaped by the workplace, not the church.” [p. 48] 
 

The Workplace in God’s Plan 

    The workplace is huge in God’s plan to redeem the lost world.  

  • Jesus spent most of his adult life in the workplace before he was a rabbi. 
  • He spent 92% of his public ministry time in the marketplace (p.66). 
  • 86% of Jesus’ parables were based on workplace situation. 

    Sadly, laments Lyn, 87% of believers leave God behind on Monday morning (p.60).
 

The Church and the Workplace 

    How should the church then engage the workplace? The author proposes a number of points to mobilize the church: 

  • We need to engage with excellence. 
  • We need to bring love and integrity in all we do. 
  • God’s Kingdom needs to come into the workplace with power and boldness. 
  • Most of the world won’t come into the Church on Sundays, So the Church must go into the world on Weekdays. (p. 152) 
  • Lyn calls for a mindset change. 

Church work is what you do for the organized institution of the Church. The work of the Church is what is done between Sundays … in homes, schools  offices, on construction jobs, in the marketplace…

PAGE 222

    Therefore, the Church must be mobilized into the workplace. To do this the church must: 

  • Be less “churchy.” 
  • More welcoming to outsiders. 
  • Apply God’s truth to meet every day work challenges in practical ways. 

    Unfortunately, most pastors don’t understand the workplace and are not prepared to provide solutions. 
 

Bi-vocational Models 

    Bi-vocational work was common in the early church. Pastor Lyn dedicates a lengthy section exploring bi-vocational and alternative approaches to traditional full-time clergy model. He addresses many of the advantages of this approach for reaching the lost. For instance, the bi-vocational workers are more connected to the marketplace. They also are models for what it means to be a follower of Christ. 

    To be fair, he also discusses the challenges. 


Critique 

    If I were to find fault with the author it might be an over-emphasis on church planting and pastoring churches as part of all ministry calling. There are many roles for Kingdom workers. And varied gifts. Some are equipped to prepare the soil. Others are better at watering. Yet others tend to the harvest. But all are necessary. 


How-To 

    “In a workplace church the expectation is not so much for the world to come into church but for the church to go into the world to reach pre – believers on weekdays.” (p. 225) 

    “But one of the greatest ways to mobilize the church into the workplace is to invite our pre – believing friends and colleagues to do community work with us…”  (p. 221) 

    The work of the church begins with a mindset and life-style change. Our witness is integrated into our whole life journey. When people encounter us in the marketplace, they should be seeing Christ engaged in the affairs of life. 

    The church does not engage the marketplace through programs. It engages community through relationships. The relationships are the opening to discipling those who do not know Jesus. As believers model Christ in everyday life, they are learning what we are commanded to do in the Great Commission – “teaching them all the things I have commanded you.” 

    Marketplace works do need training. Lyn suggest changes seminaries should make to be relevant for marketplace ministry. He goes further showing there are many, often better, alternatives to seminary for equipping marketplace workers. 
 

Finding workplace ministers  

    Churches need to be intentional about recruiting and equipping people for their marketplace ministry. 

    There are many people in the congregation who can serve. An active process is needed to identify and prepare them. 

    Once identified it is important to call them out and set them aside as “workplace ministers” before the congregation.  
 

Resources 

    The book is a wellspring of resources. Not only do you find the experience and wisdom of the author, but he points to many resources provided by other organizations so the reader develop his own plan for marketplace ministry. 

  • Written by a practitioner who shares many of his own experiences. 
  • Covers a broad range of vocations. 
  • A thoroughly researched book on tentmakimg from an Asia perspective. 
  • Many case studies from Asia that I have not read about elsewhere. 
  • Examples from history and contemporary case studies. 
  • Extensive bibliography 
  • List of organizations with tools and help for implementing marketplace ministries. 
  • Fellowship of Companies for Christ 
  • Seminars 
  • Alpha Course 
  • Etc. 


Conclusion 

    The largest and most diverse mission field to reach in the world today remains the workplace [p.264]. 


Get the book from your favorite bookstore. The Invasive Kingdom: Transforming Today’s Believers Into Workplace Ministers, by Philip Lyn