The risky business of being in community

 

element-GrIt’s my desire to connect deeply with those I’m serving. I believe a deep and honest relationship is fundamental to make disciples. And, of course, disciple-making among Hispanic Americans requires such a relationship.

But such a relationship is also very, very risky.

Specially when you get a group of men to talk about soccer, family life, and their own Spiritual Transformation.

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This is the way to go for the long haul, in discipleship

element-Pr

Disciple-making in a culturally diverse setting requires a particular process. And when working among Hispanics, such a process is of more relevance. In Passion-based discipleship, this process must be balanced and nonlinear.

We believe this reflects the promise of our Lord to always be with us (Mt 28)

It’s also a way to pace our efforts, and be able to invest long term in those we want to serve.

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Redeeming culture – Day 11

28dayswithJesus

 

Then he began to denounce the cities where most of his mighty works had been done, because they did not repent.
Matthew 11:20

 

It’s never easy to denounce anything. At this time and age, many value acceptance and tolerance, which translates into practical universalism and relativism; our culture says there are not absolutes any more, therefore, no one can really denounce anything or anyone.

Of course, that is not true, our Lord is not like that, and when making disciples often is necessary for us to denounce the parts of the culture that has capitulated to sin.

We must denounce the part of our culture that are against God’s prescriptions. But we mus also celebrate the parts He is redeeming.

 

Consider this…

How do you denounce / celebrate culture?

 

To Enjoy – Day 10

28dayswithJesus

 

These twelve Jesus sent out, instructing them, “Go nowhere among the Gentiles and enter no town of the Samaritans,  but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.
Matthew 10:5,6

 

A this point, the Lord is giving an opportunity to His disciples to experience, first hand, what is like to be in mission proclaiming and serving those around them. He gives them very specific instructions regarding what to say and what to do. They also have a very well defined Target Group. The Lord wants them to experience, to enjoy the blessing of serving others, while He is still with them.

Challenge, encourage, and support those you are cultivating as humble followers of Jesus Christ

Consider this…

What opportunities are you providing for others to enjoy the gifts He has given them?

 

Reputation at risk – Day 9

28dayswithJesus

 

And as Jesus reclined at table in the house, behold, many tax collectors and sinners came and were reclining with Jesus and his disciples.
Matthew 9:10

 

Making disciples is a risky business, specially for your reputation. Here, the Lord is investing His life in those who their culture would label undesirable. By association, our Lord was identifying whit them and, to some extend, making Himself like them.

He became also undesirable, from the point of view of those in charge. Not necessarily a smart move, for the growth of His ministry – from the human perspective – but certainly a move 100% in alignment with His call.

Social and cultural approval is not the end result of disciple-making

 

Consider this…

What are you risking by following His call to make disciples of the nations?

 

Without exception – Day 8

28dayswithJesus

When he came down from the mountain, great crowds followed him. 2 And behold, a leper came to him… When he had entered Capernaum, a centurion came forward to him… And when Jesus entered Peter’s house, he saw his mother-in-law lying sick with a fever… And a scribe came up and said to him…
Matthew 8

 

Crowds follow Him. All kind of people. Different to one another, culturally and socially, but all with the same need. We are told, specifically, at least four individuals came forward to meet Him. And He received / served each one of them.

Without exception.

Regardless of culture, we all need the same Good News. Without exception.

He addressed their need first, and then He talks about eternal truths.

He shows no favoritism. That is how He makes disciples.

 

Consider this…

How is the universal need for the Good News an encouragement for you, as a disciple-maker?

 

The practical consequences of God’s grace

givebygraceIt’s my personal opinion that God’s grace is one of the biggest differences between Christianity and other religions. It is also one of the truths about God that is easy to forget. We are quick to move on to some other deep theological concepts, as if grace was just for beginners or just to get us started in the discipleship for our own heart.

When making disciples among Hispanic Americans, God’s grace is vital.

Let me give you just a few reasons why.

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Planning the details for our first meeting.

followinhumilityThe time has come for the first meeting of my next Connecting Point. Even when I have a general idea of what it’s going to be like, now I need to work on the details for each meeting. Keeping the end result in mind is very helpful for that. Continue Reading

What’s the end result of discipleship?

followinhumilityWhere are we going with this? That’s a fair question to ask in disciple-making. And it is of particular importance when doing it across cultures. If you do a search on this site, you will find other posts where we talk about the benefits of a clear end result, but now I’d like to talk to you about how to define one.

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Bold – Day 5

28dayswithJesus

 

Seeing the crowds, he went up on the mountain, and when he sat down, his disciples came to him. And he opened his mouth and taught them.
Matthew 5:1,2

 

No distraction. No intimidation. Not thinking what to say to a crowd – Is it going to be popular? Offensive? Well received? He saw the people, found the best place, and He taught them. Bold and direct. Caring and loving. Exactly what He came to do, and exactly what the people needed to hear.

The veracity of God’s message is independent from culture.

 

Consider this…

What are your fears, when making disciples?