When I came to Fulwood at the beginning of 2005 as Pastoral Evangelist, I really began to wrestle with the question “If we really want to grow as a church with people finding Jesus as Lord and Saviour, how do we do it?” I’m sure minds mightier than mind have much better ideas than me on how to answer this, but what has excited me is walking with God and the folk from FFMC as we have discovered together something of how we might do this – what if Each One, Reached One?
As someone not originally from a Wesleyan background, I found many encouragements and inspirations from looking at what God did through Wesley. He observed that in his ministry, he did not set out with a predefined strategy but rather responded to what he saw God doing, and the needs that presented themselves to him, and to some extent, I think that is what we are currently experiencing as people are coming to faith in Christ on a regular basis here.
As a result of reading David Watson’s book “Discipleship”, I arrived at FFMC with 3 P’s burning within me, and having drawn a fantastic, amazing team of people around me to oversee our outreach work, 3 became 4 P’s and in my mind, these formed as follows:
Most people these days focus on Personal Evangelism, or do little more than pray for the lost. What about being SALT as well as LIGHT in our world? What about loving unconditionally whilst creating opportunities for God to move in power and transformation? Whilst prayer and personal evangelism are vitally important, we need to realise that we are living in a post-Christian, messy mucky world that has a big, Jesus shaped hole in it. What an opportunity for the church today to rise up with hope for our nation, for our city, for our communities. The gospel still works!
But what do you think – how do you bridge the gap between a world that just does not seem to have room for God, and a church which let’s face it, seems a pretty strange place to those outside?
Well, I have some ideas and thoughts – and in my next blog I’ll begin to share some of these; but I’d love to hear your thoughts!
Watch this space!