Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Watching and Listening for Next Steps!

Much of ministry for me has been sitting before God, listening to God's Spirit and then obeying what I believe I am hearing. It has been a fun time seeing God work through so many of you.

When I think I heard many of you right in Orlando I thought I'd heard comments on the need to assist churches in developing and helping get past some of those barriers that people create. Maye they are growth barriers but most definitely they are barriers. Remember it is God that causes growth and so I believe that most of what we need to do is to intentionally feeding the flock (to obey) and leading the flock (casting vision, modeling and sharing stories).

The great commission says in Matthew 28:19-20 "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." To "grow" the church is God's responsibility, to plant and water is our responsibility so we must ask, are we actively and intentionally making disciples. Are we teaching people to obey and not simply inform, instruct and make them comfortable. Look at Jesus' preaching style and how He developed His team, how'd He do it? What do you see?

To develop the body of Christ is really foundational through basic disciple making. Esaum said at Orlando that fruitfulness should be evaluated through how others are bearing fruit you have equipped. Good thought and I agree.
Besides winning them we need to grow them, then intentionally equip them and love them. Can a processing believe be Christlike and not share his or her faith? Can a person be a growing believer and not be making disciples? I think look at the qualifications of an elder...several of you are moving to appointing men this summer and fall, what do you see? A new leader better model and behaviorally be doing what you do and "obeying" the Great Commission and Commandment or they shouldn't be an elder. Revolutionary, maybe but these truths are Biblical.

So some simple next steps to growing a church and breaking barriers might begin by looking at your disciple making pathway and asking is it Biblical, is it effective, is it practical and is it transferable? then you might look at your preaching styles and ask am I teaching application, asking people to obey God and am I speaking to my audience or just wanting to inform and instruct. When you teach a child, you bring the message to their level and make is simply so they receive, hear and obey. Why is it different in the church? Just some thoughts, what do you think?

Friday, May 2, 2008

Lets see how many of you read this thing.....

I have penciled in a date of September 10th for our CP leadership meeting. Jim Fann will be with us at this point to discuss a church health assessment and talk about issues new churches face in developmental stages. Jim will be a "new voice" for many of you and brings good experience and insights.

Tomorrow I have my Personal retreat Day (PRD) and will be seeking the Lord all day on church planting developments and next steps. Please pray guys....thatnk you!

Monday, April 28, 2008


Good Morning guys.....
The week finds me traveling through northern WY, right now I am in Sheridan seeing if a church should be here and if God may be calling us here. Great college town of 15k plus.
I am getting reflections from Nat'l CP Team members and I have been asked to weigh in. I will cut paste the comments once I receive them all. I will meet Dave this week to talk about maybe pulling us together soon.

Here are some things to ponder some....

what were the one or two highlights from each of you?

what would you want different next year?

what is the synergy from a conference like this for your regional teams and the district?

how many of you are making your way to the national conference? you are welcome to meet with me and the national team. Darrin Patrick is having a day conversation with us.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Just seeing how this thing works.
Confused as to if this will all appear as Bruce or whether my blogging info will show up.
Whatever the case, we need to get together.

Starting Fresh

Welcome to a new beginning, a fresh beginning for our team to communicate and interact. I hope even some of you that lack some tech stuff will join in.

The conference we just attended was an awesome time for each of us. I haven't heard a bad word yet except some disappointment that one of our guys promised to show up in a speedo and didn't. Bummer, what happened Joe?!

Guys, lets start here and further the discussion....a couple of initial things on my mind.
First I am primarily focused on making disciples and reproducing new churches from parent churches. But disciple making (ie. multiplication) is my actual passion and behind my suggestions, insights and life.

Second, my vision I feel is from the Lord (Deut 1:10-11) is to launch a 1,000 new churches focused on using the laity and their giftedness. To see 10 more men (we have India & Costa Rica) from other countries be equipped with some of the knowledge the Lord has given us to enable them to multiply a movement. My vision for the gospel extends to the world, the poor, the remote, the cities and all people for God's kingdom and His glory!

Third, all of this can only happen in complete dependence on what God and His plan. There will be a day coming when our lives may take a different turn, a different place and different relationships so how can we challenge and build each other up to further what God wants in building His church, His way wherever we land in this life?

Isaiah 43:18-21 was given to me by the Lord in ministry in Wisconsin almost 20 yrs ago. The prophet said, " Do not call to mind the former things, Or ponder things of the past. "Behold, I will do something new, Now it will spring forth; Will you not be aware of it? I will even make a roadway in the wilderness, Rivers in the desert. The beasts of the field will glorify Me, The jackals and the ostriches, Because I have given waters in the wilderness And rivers in the desert, To give drink to My chosen people. The people whom I formed for Myself Will declare My praise."
To me and my application is the remainder of this, what do you think, how does it apply to whatever we do?

Each of you guys are awesome and this is for all of us....add some pic's, decorate it as you wish and let's enjoy the conversation and see what God does in the future.