The Multiplying Church 4: Jesus Movement

I’m gonna do a few series kind of interacting with and starting discussions about themes in some books on church planting. This first series comes out of the The Multiplying Church.

I love what Bob writes about the difference between a church planting movement and a Jesus movement. He notes that a Jesus movement is not about technique but instead intimacy with the living God. They are driven by the Holy Spirit rather than human ingenuity.

I agree. I desperately want my ministry to flow out of an intense relationship with God. I want my ministry to be bigger than me and for it to be crazy and out of control.

Do you think there’s a bit of tension here? I feel it. On one hand I want to be totally dependent on God, but I also want to grow in my knowledge, increase my skills, improve my techniques. I’d like to think that that second “want” doesn’t diminish the first, but … well, does it? As I’m better prepared to do ministry, how do I continue to rely on God to the same degree as when I knew nothing and had crappy skills?

Bob also mentions something I’ve never heard. He explains that “there is no historical evidence that after the gospel first invades a country, it does so a second time. The initial movement of the gospel is powerful in a specific place,” (p 60). Maybe this is part of the reason why. Maybe when people first introduce the gospel into a new nation they are God-dependent to the extreme. Then when it “works” they decide that they’ve gotten it figured out and can continue to do what they’ve been doing (“only we can do it even better!”) They then focus on keeping up the momentum, developing their techniques, and the Holy Spirit moves into the passenger seat.

So what do you think? Let’s try to avoid the clichés and just be honest. How do we grow in knowledge, increase skills, improve techniques AND rely on God radically?

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