Rev Graham Horsley who is Methodist Connexional Fresh Expressions Missioner shared with us on the theme of Risk-taking Mission and Service. Below is an outline of his themes, thoughts and ideas.
Graham shared a story from Yorkshire and the founding of Filey Primitive Methodist Church. He shared how a man who went to try and plant a church there had fallen in a ditch on the way and whilst lying there saw faces of people he had never met. When he preached that night those same faces were in the crowd and gave their lives to Jesus that day.
Graham shared with us that he felt God wanting to show each of us faces of people he wants us to see. People he wants us to work with, who we are called to journey with. Graham also shared a word with us, especially those of the older generation.
‘Remember that first call, what I called you to… do it’
What are the risks?
3 bigger risks than doing risk-taking mission.
- Do Not Change : Stay Put – We are called to wake up die and say right God I will allow things to die in order that other things may live. We need to let go of some things in order to receive the new.
- Work Harder – We don’t need to change we just need to work harder. do 80 hours not 70. Add one more thing to the list. We need to work smarter not harder.
- Believe the lie – that decline is inevitable, we are going to keep on shrinking, can Methodism grow again? But Jesus said ‘The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few…’ Need to be in the right field with the right tools.
- Set goals for pioneers?
- How many by when?
- How will they be funded?
- ??% DAF for projects outside trad. Church?
Set aside people, money, initiatives to set the trend for others. See what the Spirit is doing and join in.
Luke 10 send 72 (referencing Andrew Jones )
- Go, entre, stay, eat & drink – Notice it’s about going out and sharing others hospitality not providing yourself. Enter their homes, workplaces, pubs, clubs and receive what they offer.
- Heal – In all ways. If it’s miraculous people will talk. People will ask whats going on?
- Tell – Say what God has done in your life.
- People of Peace
- Come and See – One small step (or lots of small steps) -What new activity can you do in church regularly that serves your community? How can you step further from serving to telling in an appropriate way?
- Engage – Who are the people (people of peace) that we can work with outside church to serve our communities? What church activities do we need to invite them back to?
- Go and Stay : Heaven – 93% of circuits and 37% of local churches have started Fresh Expressions of Church. Equal number of fresh expressions of church and traditional churches in every circuit? How much of your resources – finance, paid staff, time, volunteer energy – will you give to this? Spend more on mission than on maintenance. Spend more time on mission than on maintenance.
What can I Do?
- Time outside church! Be intentional – find time to do things.
- Intentional Conversations – Find time for these conversations (outside of church). Put it in your diary.
Take the risk, try things, make mistakes.
Go big or go home!