“Evangelism is faithful and imaginative communication that implores others to step into the Kingdom, to join the family, and to accept their adoption as sons and daughters”
– Scott Sunquist (Fuller Seminary)
I was always scared to share my faith. I didn’t know what to say, I wasn’t sure if I could answer hard questions about God, or heaven, or hell. It seemed like evangelism was for people that knew a lot about the bible and how to answer the hard questions I didn’t know much about. And so, early in my journey with Jesus, my faith became defined by sitting in a pew and gaining knowledge every Sunday from smart people. I learned about God and about the Bible, but I never really learned how to live what I was learning, and so evangelism remained something that “other” people did.
When you really think about Dr. Sunquist’s quote about evangelism being imaginative and faithful communication, then all of the sudden you’re released from needing to present in-depth theology or draw a map of salvation. Imaginative communication to join the Kingdom can take on many forms! Imagine the different ways YOU might invite people into the Kingdom. Could you possibly think of things you already do that could also be used as way to give a glimpse of the Kingdom of God to others?
Recently I got the privilege of joining Kevin and Lydia Andrews for “Pancakes on the Porch” at their home in downtown Colorado Springs. Kevin and Lydia are part of the community at Pulpit Rock Church in Colorado Springs, a church I serve at as Pastor of Missional Culture. What Kevin and Lydia do automatically and instinctively is use every part of their lives to share Jesus with others, and they do it in non-intrusive and non-invasive ways…with food! Jesus was known for sitting around the table with others, teaching about the Kingdom and telling what it would be like. What I saw that Saturday morning in their front yard was simply a glimpse of what the Kingdom would be like. I had an easy time imagining Jesus standing around in sandals with a foam plate eating pancakes with us. People were gathered, meeting each other, sharing life, sharing food, laughing and enjoying their common journey through life. This thing they do, pancakes and fellowship, IS evangelism. It is an imaginative and faithful way to love neighbors and give a glimpse of Kingdom values. In fact, they exhibited one of Jesus’ most important values, according to him…love your neighbor.
So how do we find our own “Pancakes on the Porch?” How do we find imaginative ways that we can join God in missional living? Sometimes this can be hard, sometimes it takes experimenting, sometimes it can take looking at your own context and asking what your neighbors or coworkers need in community. It can also take having new eyesight, where we see culture and our neighbors differently, as people to invite into the Kingdom. It can take training and learning to find a rhythm of living that is other-focused and God-partnering. Let me assure you, once you start looking at life and faith this way, your walk with Jesus becomes an amazing adventure! Once you see the ways you can share God with others through normal everyday living; soccer games, school, work, neighborhood, ….even pancakes, then an amazing and exciting life opens up to you! Faith becomes an adventure and not simply defined by church attendance.
I want to invite you on this amazing journey! I want to ask you to take a couple steps into it and see what you think. This fall, I and Scott Olson will lead a focused Forge Cohort through some great reading material, videos, and discussions about living missional. We want to invite you to ask dangerous questions about your own faith that will then lead to a meaningful life following Jesus! I hope you’ll signup below. The material will be primarily online with some monthly connections via video and in-person. What you will walk away with is a totally new way to look at living out your faith. If you want more in your own walk with Jesus, or possibly lead others who need a bigger perspective, join us for the Fall Forge CoHort! It’s $100 per month for 6 months, and will be the best time and investment you’ve made in your own journey and your leading of others!
Who would’ve thought…just loving your neighbor with pancakes would be what Jesus asked all along.
Forge Colorado Springs Missional Training CoHort
Fall 2018 Cohort
$100 per month (billable monthly)