A few weeks ago, Christy and I had the opportunity to go to the NewSpring Leadership Conference in Anderson, South Carolina. It was refreshing and recharging and I could not have asked for a better conference to attend.
The speaker line up was full of some of the best church communicators out there today. Perry Noble (pastor at New Spring Church – SC), Jud Wilhite (Pastor at Central Christian Church – Las Vegas), Steven Furtick (Pastor at Elevation Church – Charlotte) Mark Driscoll (Pastor at Mars Hill – Seattle), Andy Stanley (Pastor at NorthPoint Church – Atlanta), Judah Smith (Pastor at City Church – Seattle) and Craig Groeschel (Pastor at LifeChurch – Oklahoma). While they all brought great messages of encouragement and challenge, I think the overall theme came down to one question that Judah Smith asked during his message… “When did Jesus stop being enough?”
While it wasn’t the theme, as I read through my notes on the plane ride home, it seemed to me that every speaker’s message revolved around that idea.
As I started to think about our new series that starts this week called NOT A FAN. I began to think back to that question… “When did Jesus stop being enough?”
When did church become about “everything” instead of just the “one thing?” When did it become about programs and special events and the idea of “what’s in it for me” instead of being about Jesus, and Him alone?
Sometimes people think if we are not DOING a bunch of everything, then we are failing somehow in ministry. I want to say that is wrong thinking. Open up your Bible or open up a new tab on top to Matthew 28:18-20. I’ll give you a minute. Alright, read it?
If not, here it is - 18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (NIV)
I would like to HIGHLIGHT a few words here… Jesus does not tell us to go and make programs or bigger churches or fans of Him… he calls us to make disciples (fully devoted followers of Him) and teach them about Him and pass on His commands.
While it is great that churches provide all that they do, we really need to be careful to not let those things become priority or the reason why we go to church or do church. Church is not about us. We are not there to be entertained. That is a FAN mentality that cannot be, because Jesus didn’t ask for fans, He has challenged us to be followers and to make them.
Starting this Sunday we will be discussing the difference – I hope you join us this Sunday as we kick this series off.