To See Churches Do What They Were Created To Do
Come join us, learn with us, and help reproduce those things God wants to teach us as we are on mission with Him in Hamburg, Germany. Our goal is the Great Commission, and we would not begin to segregate any part of it away by saying something like, "Our part in this Great Commission is to reach our Jerusalem right here where we are." Sure our churches may give 1% of our budgets, or say even 10% to missions, but our primary focus remains where God has planted us. Let me share something with you - God has planted those of you whom He calls His children in His Kingdom which is spiritual, heavenly and knows no earthly boundaries. The first thing you have to decide is whether you subscribe to just a portion of the Great Commission or the whole thing.
We, ourselves, may be located in a geographical place called Hamburg, and that is only for as long as God wants us here, but we see now and will always believe that what we allow God to do through us where ever we are can have global Great Commission results. Hamburg is a gateway city, and the ends of the earth have come to Hamburg. It is one of the world's leading consular cities, having consulates from 96 countries. So God has brought the frontline to Hamburg, but too few of His people are responding. In Hamburg, as may be the case in many other places in Europe, one out of three church buildings are closing their doors each year. This is a post-modern society and a post-church society where people will tell you that the church of today is irrelevant and obsolete. So Hamburg is not just part of the front line for so many foreign immigrants who now call it home, but it is also a front line situation for the state of God's church in Germany and in Europe.
We believe that working in partnership with local harvest forces, with other Great Commission Christian organizations, and with the new laborers that God raises up out of the harvest fields that God can turn the tide of what is happening in Hamburg. We believe that when God's turns that tide, that if we His people stay faithful to some simple quickly reproducible and biblical methods of starting reproducing churches, that a tidal wave will shoot out of Hamburg and stretch its wake back to the ends of the earth. So we pray to God - let the earthquake begin here. Let it shake loose any faulty foundation and land us firm upon the Word of God and the church that breaths in and exhales the Great Commission. After all, wasn't that why Jesus came? And wasn't that why He died on the cross? And wasn't that why He commission His church and said that "On this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell will not prevail against." When we plant a church in a community, then Satan has lost his stronghold and the strongman who was chased away cannot come back to find the house that was made clean empty any more.
We believe in the power of prayer, the authoritative Word of God - the Bible, the work of the Holy Spirit, and the ordination of the church as the means by which the Gospel will be taken to the ends of the earth. The greatest missionaries are not people. The greatest missionary is the church, because when set free to be church it can adapt to any language, to any culture, to any situation whether free or persecuted. This kind of church is likened until what Paul wrote - "I will become all things to all men, so that I might save some." This kind of church knows no boundaries, no limits. Along with God, His Word, and His Spirit, this church is both universal and adaptable to each missionary situation. It is only we the members of local churches who hinder its creativity and ability to adapt, multiply and perform the missionary task it was created to do. This stands true on every word of the Bible, but finds church cultures and structures to be negotiable. This church offer genuine, redeeming community. And we are discovering that even those here who feel they have no need for what they know as church are still seeking for true spiritual community. They want to know the truth. They want to find God. And they want to find a place where they can be known and loved for who they are while being challenged and held accountable to become better. And we teach this can only come through obedience to God's Word in the context of God's church with sincere prayer, the help of the Holy Spirit, and the encouragement of other believers. So we study God's Word to obey it, not just for knowledge. And we keep our communities small enough so that no one who enters a stranger leaves a stranger. Those who join in or start something in their home find Christ centered communities which value them, encourage them, and hold them lovingly accountable to become what God can create in them - Jesus likeness. In the birthing DNA of these communities is the ingredients and prayer that each will reproduce and pass along this trait to the next generation of communities they help to start.
This is not about competition between different types of church, but it is about mosaic - a different church for every different kind of people, so that none will be able to say there is not a church where they can belong. When we bring all these different churches into the light and put them side by side what we will see is the beauty of a stain glass window we could never have imagined, the same picture that is painted for us in Revelations - that in that day people from every nation, from every tribe and from every tongue will worship Jesus. Only, we don't have to wait until that day to see a glimpse of it. We can meet in small communities who think like us and speak the same language for accountability and Obedience Bible Studies, and we can also come together in the Temple Court or larger gatherings for celebrations of worship - stain glass windows laid out before our Master's feet. The church, from the moment of Pentecost when it began, is the reverse or the anti-virus for the curse of Babel. At the tower of Babel God scattered the peoples and caused them all to speak in different languages. At Pentecost, at the creation of His church, God gathered the peoples and caused them all to hear the Good News in their own mother tongues. The church today still has that gathering power. So we meet weekly in the temple courts, but we also meet daily house to house.
Is God tugging at your heart to pray for this ministry and for the city of Hamburg? Is God raising the question in your hearts - why can't we do this in our church and in our community? Is God wanting you to join in this Great Commission network? Are you ready right now and fully available to let God begin to reproduce through you, through your family, and through your church? Then maybe we can partner, or maybe we can help each other out. Here are a few possibilities. If one applies to you, then please contact us at mailbox@ConnecXians.com
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