This past Sunday, I had the privilege of teaching the Activate Conference at The Summit. The Activate Conference was established and the material written by staff of TMS Global. TMS Global coached us as we began our first Global Impact Celebration. One part of the Activate Conference looks at Four Shifts that Lead to Missional Transformation. As I share the shifts, ask yourself, “Have I made this shift?”

  • ·         Move from “Maintenance” to “Missional.”  Here is what is meant by this:
    • o   Maintenance looks inward – Missional looks outward
    • o   Maintenance focuses on ourselves – Missional focuses on others
    • o   Maintenance places priority on property – Missional places priority on people
    • o   Maintenance depends upon our own limited resources – Missional trusts in God’s unlimited resources
    • o   It comes down to this basic question: For whom does the church exist? Itself? Or those not yet Christ-Followers?


  • ·         Move from “Come-To” Churches to “Go-To” Churches. 
    • o   We typically expect people to come – but Jesus told us to GO to those not yet disciples.
    • o   “Come-To” Churches focus on the “found” – “Go-To” Churches focus on the “lost.”
    • o   “Come-To” Churches keep their member busy with the congregation’s activities – “Go-To” Churches encourage their member to be on mission in the world. 
    • o   A key issue is; “How and Where are we to encounter lost people?”


  • ·         Move from “Only Professionals” to “All Believers” doing Ministry.
    • o   Return to the New Testament model where the work of mission and ministry where done by called out leaders and laity alike.
    • o   Leaders – pastors and staff – equip God’s people for ministry. (Ephesians 4:11-12)
    • o   Key issues is who does the work of mission and ministry in our church?


  •  ·         Move from a “Mission Program” to a “Missional Heart”
    • o   This is a move from Missions being the work of a small group (Committee or Team) to Missions being the purpose of the church.
    • o   Move from a handful involved in Missions to All Believers involved in Missions.

One of the purposes of our annual Global Impact Celebration is to help us keep these shifts. It is easy to be busy with our lives, even church activities, and lose focus on what should be our priority. The Global Impact Celebration is like a Mission Revival. It awakens us to what God is doing around the world and how we can join in.
 
I encourage you be in prayer for our Global Impact Celebration, which kicks off February 8 and continues through February 10. Make plans to be a full participant.      
​---  Rudy

     

Your responses to these Reflections are always welcomed. You can email me at <rguess@tuscumbiaumc.org>

104 East Third Street / Tuscumbia, Alabama 35674 / 256-383-2853 / Email: office@tuscumbiaumc.org

Mid-Week Reflections from Bro. Rudy - January 16, 2019

Being a Missional Church

A few years ago, Dr. Steve Ayers, a pastor in Bowling Green, Ky. was one of the preachers at the gathering of North Alabama United Methodist preachers at Camp Sumatanga. He was asked about his church’s mission program. He responded; “We don’t have a mission program. We have a mission. It is to connect persons to Jesus Christ.”

That is the mission of every local church. Our purpose is to bear witness to Jesus. Our Vision Statement for the Shoals Wesleyan Partnership puts it this way;“Awaken more passionate Christ-Followers.”  In what we call the Great Commission, Jesus said we are to “go and make followers of all people in the world.” (Matthew 28:19a; NCV)

But is that really our priority? Is it your priority? The Church is not a building. As the old songs say, “We are the Church.” Those of us who claim to be followers of Jesus are the Church. That means the Church will only be committed to the purpose of making disciples if you and I are committed to that purpose.