Saturday, August 16, 2008

I Am a Pharisee

It just occurred to me that I am a modern-day Pharisee...

I'm on deck for this weekend at our services, and I'm kicking off the fall small group semester. Whenever we launch a new semester of groups, we like to focus on the topics of friendships, community, spiritual growth, etc. to encourage people to find a place to plug in.

This semester, I'm taking a unique angle. I'm encouraging people to not find a group for themselves. That's right. Don't find a group for yourself. Rather, look for a group that would appeal to a friend who is far from God and invite them to come with you. I'll be speaking primarily out of Matthew 9 and challenge NCCers with the question, "Who are you bringing to the table?" I'm challenging us to be a friend, to invite friends into environments where they can encounter Christ, to invite friends into an environment where they can question Christ, and to become spiritual tour guides.

As I review my notes, I'm feeling super convicted. Because I'm not really sure who I would invite to a group...much less what group I'd invite them to. When you are in full-time ministry, it's easy to get so busy "ministering" that you stop caring about the people that God cares about. For me, it's a priority to have dinner with my small group leaders. For Jesus, it was a priority to have dinner with "notorious sinners." That means I look more like a Pharisee than Jesus.


At 8:09 PM, Blogger Mike Mathews said...

You have always centered yourself in your leaders. They need someone like you as they give their all to those in their groups. I know you pour yourself into those leaders, which is why you have the ministry that you lead. I know what you are saying, but I'm still proud of you!

At 8:42 AM, Blogger Jessi said...

I so hear you!

At 8:26 AM, Blogger Elaine said...

This is the paradox of being a pastor, isn't it? That you are so busy investing in the lives of the well that you lost contact with the sick?


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