I recently attended an event honoring Azusa Pacific University’s outgoing president, Jon Wallace. Jon served APU as president for 19 years. One of the memories that was shared more than once was that Dr. Wallace always asks good questions. It was a great reminder for me. I tend to lecture; I’m one who thinks he knows all the answers. But I’m learning that the more I know, the more I know that I don’t know! I need to ask good questions!
“What if every Christian could win and grow a disciple this year?”
One thing I do know is that I am called to be an evangelist. I’m not the type that holds big meetings. My passion is to equip the Body for the work of the ministry according to Ephesians 4:11-16. So, my questions zero in on the Gospel and sharing it with others. Here’s the one that drives me and defines the vision of the ministry, Win and Grow:
As a disciple (fully devoted follower) of Jesus Christ, consider these questions:
“What is the Great Commission and to whom is it directed?”
“How does the Great Commission relate to the Great Commandments?”
“How did you come to know Jesus as Savior and Lord?
“Are you ready to share your story with a neighbor, co-worker, family member, or even a new acquaintance?”
“Do you know that your own value, and that of each other person is beyond measure? “Can you prove it from the Bible?”
“What does it mean to be a partaker of God’s nature?”
“Are your goals as a Christian aligned with God’s purposes?
“What is God’s Plan of Salvation? Are you ready to share it with someone?”
“You share the Gospel by your actions, which can open doors to share with words.” “Why are you hesitant to do so?”
“How are you preparing yourself to lead someone to Christ and help them grow into maturity?”
“Do you know your spiritual gifts?”
“Do you know how to focus your spiritual gifts on the Great Commission?”
“Are you prepared to witness to someone who is Mormon, a Jehovah’s Witness, an agnostic or atheist, a Muslim, or someone in an Eastern religion?” If not, “how are you preparing yourself to do so?”
“How would you answer a person who asks difficult questions, like ‘How could a loving God send anyone to hell?’ or ‘How could a loving God allow such suffering?’”
Pastors and lay leaders, here are seven questions for your Christian Communities:
“How can your Christian Community further develop a Culture of Outreach?”
“How can you get everyone in your church to become more personally and actively engaged in the Great Commission?”
“How can your church become more relative to your surrounding community?”
“Would the people in your surrounding community be sad if your church was gone?”
“What is God already doing in your community and how can your church get in on it?”
“What are the needs of your surrounding community that you could help meet?”
“What is your Christian Community doing to ‘fish its ponds’: Neighborhood? With small groups? Families of Sunday School kids and/or youth? Visitors? Public schools? Christian school, preschool, and/or daycare families (if your church has any of these)? People touched through your Community Involvement?”
I’m sure that you have more great questions! I hope you’ll share them, and any of your thoughts regarding outreach, with me. At the end of this article is a place for you to respond. Also, my email is below, and you can get to me via Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn. The ministry of Win and Grow is dedicated to helping individuals and Christian Communities to ask and explore answers to these questions and more. We provide a resource, a 50-day devotional journey called, “THE RELUCTANT EVANGELIST: Embrace Your Gifts and Fulfill God’s Purpose.” It can help you and any Jesus follower in three very important ways: First, it will deepen your relationship with God. Second, it will increase your understanding of how God made you. Third, it will show you how to focus your own spiritual gifts, personality, and God-given passion to fulfill God’s purpose. He wants to be in relationship with every person on the planet, and He can use you just the way He made you! Take take a few minutes to check out the preview. Just click on the picture of the book. I think you’ll find it to be a very reasonable and worthwhile investment. If you can’t afford it, let me know @ WinnGrow@gmail.com. In just 50 days, every disciple can gain more confidence to share the Gospel when the Holy Spirit, your Partner in the Harvest, leads.
“In your heart(s) set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.” 1 Peter 3:15