2017 can be a year of revival. We could see an unprecedented number of people surrender their lives to God in America, but only if we (the church) are willing to change some things. What needs to change?
God is calling us to make 2017 a year in which we invest more in people and less in everything else.
God has always made it clear that people matter most to Him. The problem is that they don’t often enough matter most to us. It’s time we made sure that we care more about people than we do our church buildings, homes, cars, and comfort. It’s time for Christians of every denomination to join together to meet one another’s needs as well as the needs of those in our communities. This isn’t a new concept…in fact, it’s really a return to the model used by the early church.
All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of their possessions was their own, but they shared everything they had. With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And God’s grace was so powerfully at work in them all that there were no needy persons among them. For from time to time those who owned land or houses sold them, brought the money from the sales and put it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to anyone who had need. – Acts 4:32-35
What should this look like today?
No two churches or communities are the same so we aren’t here to create an initiative that has everyone doing the same thing. We believe #thejumpstart is a specific Word from God on what He wants us doing rather than how He wants us doing it. Just make sure what you do is authentic and is guided by your compassion and unconditional love for others. That said, here is an idea to get things rolling. Be “the jump start” for change in your church by:
- Asking God to show you what He has blessed you with that He now wants you to give to someone else in need. His answer may be money, clothing, furniture, your car, or even your home. What He asks you to give may be difficult. Seek counsel and wisdom from His Word. Once you have confirmation then move to step two.
- Bring your offering to the church. They may be surprised, but that’s ok…in fact, that’s how grassroots movements often begin. Ask them to identify someone in the community (preferably outside of the church) that has a need for what God had you give. Ask them not to give the offering to an organization, but rather directly to a person instead. Ask them to pray with that person and just let them know they are loved and welcome.
- Tell others about this initiative and ask your church to do the same. Imagine what would happen if 100 families in your church did the same thing. All of the sudden your church could get local news involved and host a day for people from all four corners of your community with the only goal being to bless their needs, pray with them, and make sure they know they are loved.
This is just one example. Get your church and community leaders together and find what works best for you. Could this happen every week or every month at your church? Do you believe that your church would grow if it did?
When people experience the genuine love of Jesus then it changes them. It’s time to change the status quo. As individuals and institutions we must place a premium on investing in people instead of new campuses, cars, vacations, lights, and sound equipment. If you think what we’ve been doing is OK then just take a look around. 2017 must be a year during which the church is transformed to show the love of Jesus to others above all else. We must all be about His “business” of people…He will do the rest.
Check out this video from 10 y/o Caleb Phillips – one of the inspirations to share this Word and see what happens.