Saturday, January 19, 2019

January 2019 Newsletter

Greetings Saints!

Recently I watched a car commercial on TV that said, “Follow no one!” It was promoting free thinking and individualism. It is a popular siren call these days. Of course it is absurd (idealistic at best) to think this way, and no sane person lives that way. We all have people we follow – our doctor, dentist, parents, teachers, coaches, friends, and our spiritual leaders. Jesus told His disciples, “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.” The apostle Paul said, “You followed my teaching, conduct, purpose, faith, patience, love, and perseverance.” Of course we need to be careful not to follow blindly, or to follow the wrong people who lead us away from God. Here’s a good man I have followed for years…

Faithwalkers Conference (December 27-30) Dennis Clark is one of my fathers in the faith. I have been following his teaching and his example for decades. Here is a photo of Dennis and I at our recent conference. He and his wife, Thelma, came out to Asheville from Colorado to lead the singing of classic GCC worship songs. I am still following my dear friend as he faithfully follows Christ! Thank you for praying for my seminar, Enjoying Evangelism. It went very well and we had a room full of eager practitioners. 

Regional House Church Conference (January 25-27) This coming weekend the churches from Georgia, Florida, Maryland, and North Carolina will meet at Lake Lanier for our annual retreat. This year we are honored to have Wayne Jacobsen come speak. Please pray for the Holy Spirit to lead our time and transform our hearts.                                                                                             

Clemson Conference (February 1-2) Brian Bridgeman has invited Danelle & I to teach a weekend retreat for Clemson students. Please pray for discernment to meet the student’s needs. Shaw, pictured here with Brian, is one of those who will be attending. Pray for God to bring all those He wants to come and for their hearts to be hungry to grow in faith! Hebrews 11:6

St. Petersburg Church Danelle and I are continuing to help the church in St. Petersburg move forward by faith to new ways of being the church and making disciples. We have Skype calls with the leaders, and we plan to return next month to assist them as they transition to more simple and organic ways of being the church and discipleship. Their faith is encouraging to us!

                                                                             Prayer Requests

1. Regional House Church Conference - January 25-27 Please ask God to give us hearts to learn and grow, and to strengthen the relationships among our churches in the region.

2. Clemson Retreat - February 1-2 Ask God to motivate students to come to this event. Pray for hearts willing to hear from God and act on truth. Finally, pray for Danelle and I to have insight into their needs and minister in the wisdom and grace of God.

3. St. Petersburg Church Pray for the church to seek the Lord and follow His leading as they move in a new direction to make disciples together in a more simple and organic way. Ask God to give Danelle & I grace to listen, understand, teach, & encourage them to take steps of faith.

Thank you for being our friends in ministry,        

Steve & Danelle   

        Congratulations Tigers for winning the College Football National Championship!

Reliant 11002 Lake Hart Dr, Suite 100, Orlando, FL 32832

Friday, January 4, 2019

The Evangelist's Job

Therefore, those who had been scattered went about preaching the word. - Acts 8:4

The early church suffered persecution for proclaiming Jesus Christ had risen from the dead and was the Savior of the world. This led to their being scattered throughout Israel. They fled for their safety from Jerusalem. Then they huddled in homes with fear until the danger past. Not! The gospel continued to be proclaimed with boldness. The question is: By whom? The answer—by everyone!
The only way to impact a world with the radical message of Jesus Christ is when every believer is committed to the cause. “Isn’t that the job of the evangelist?” some may ask. Yes, evangelists should call people to turn to Jesus Christ for salvation. But their job is much, much more! The evangelist is to equip all Christ’s followers to evangelize, as we read in Ephesians 4:11: “And He gave some as . . . evangelists . . . for the equipping of the saints for the work of service.” Their job is to model, train, and inspire all the saints to sincerely care enough about unbelievers so that they share Christ with them in word and deed. They should inspire all the saints to live exemplary lives where Jesus Christ is seen in their marriages, friendships, at work, and at home.
Evangelism is much more than a message; it’s revealing Jesus Christ alive in us! In my opinion, the evangelist has failed if he or she does all the evangelizing. Furthermore, evangelism is much more than learning a gospel presentation and going out to share it with others. It is developing a heart of compassion for those who don’t know Christ yet, praying fervently for them to be saved, and sincerely caring about them. The lost are not to be viewed as our projects! God, help all of us today to have Your compassion for unbelievers.