Saturday, August 25, 2012

3 Weeks On 1 Question

If your idea is important to your church, then you shouldn't just drop it like a bomb (usually done via sermon) in one week and assume it was fully incorporated into their lives. Change requires time. So give your people the time to pray, process, and change.

Just recently, our church took three weeks and focused on one question: What is the one thing God is calling you to work on in your life over the next season?

See, God has a general pattern of focusing on one issue at a time. While there maybe 10,000 areas of my thought and behavior that need to adjust to be more holy, God isn't asking me work on all of them right now. This isn't a spiritual rule--He can certainly choose to do differently from time to time. But I've seen in my life and the lives of many, many others that God is usually only pressing on one of them at the moment. Once you deal with that one, of course, He'll draw our attention to the next one. But He gives us the grace of not dealing with all of them at once.

So we asked our members that question: What's the one thing God is do. I don't mean I preached a sermon on that question and sent them home to hope they thought about it. During an open ministry time, I literally asked the question. I did explain it a bit (like I'm doing here) and then we discussed the idea. Then we had time for people to sit silently and start asking God to speak to them about this. Then we prayed as a group about it.

We asked them a question and then gave them time--during the service--to answer the question. But all of that was only week one.

In week two, we did a bible study on cooperating with God as he works in our lives the next week--His part and our part--and talked and prayed more about what God was saying to each of us about our top focus.  And the third week we spent our open ministry time focusing on hearing from God and sharing to each other what God had been saying to us over the last few weeks.

The first week, even after some listening and prayer time, almost no one could name what area they thought God was pressing on in their life. But in that third week, almost every single person in our church shared an area that they believe God had spoken to them about. And the majority of them were able to layout specific steps they were going to take cooperate with God--to accelerate what He was doing in their lives.

Take time to let them grow. Slow down and teach at practice speed--you'll see much more real growth (see previous post for more on that idea) than rushing from idea to idea because you're "supposed to". Success isn't about how many great sermons you can produce. It's about how much change your members experience.

Of course, for us, the next challenge is to tailor our discipleship to the growth areas our members have identified. I'll post on that as we dig in.

Oh, and what is the one thing God wants to work in your life right now? What can you do to cooperate with Him? (Give yourself the time to stay with it and really figure it out. It might take three weeks or more, but it's worth finding out the answer.)

No comments:

Post a Comment