The Ragamuffin Gospel

A man walked into the doctor’s office and said, "Doctor, I have this awful headache that never leaves me. Could you give rue something for it?" "I will," said the doctor, "but I want to check a few things out first. Tell me, do you drink a lot of liquor?" "Liquor?" said the man indignantly. "I never touch the filthy stuff."

"How about smoking?"

"I think smoking is disgusting. I’ve never in my life touched tobacco."

"I’m a bit embarrassed to ask this, but-you know the way some men are-do you do any running around at night?"

"Of course not. What do you take me for? I’m in bed every night by ten o’clock at the latest."

"Tell me," said the doctor, "the pain in the head you speak of, is it a sharp, shooting kind of pain?"

"Yes," said the man. "That’s it-a sharp, shooting kind of pain."

"Simple, my dear fellow! Your trouble is you have your halo on too tight. All we need to do is loosen it a bit." The trouble with our ideals is that if we live up to all of them, we become impossible to live with. The tilted halo of the saved sinner ts worn loosely and with easy grace. We have discovered that the cross accomplished far more than revealing the love of God. The blood of the Lamb points to the truth of grace: what we cannot do for ourselves, God has done for us. On the cross, somehow, some way, Christ bore our sins, took our place, died for us. At the cross, Jesus unmasks the sinner not only as a beggar but as a criminal before God. Jesus Christ bore our sins and bore them away. We cannot wash away the stain of our sins, but He is the Lamb who has taken away the sins of the world.

The Ragamuffin Gospel, Brennan Manning, Page 72-73

Eldredge on the Church

Remember, pleasure is often more about drugging ourselves than it is about enjoying ourselves. And the things we do to avoid the ache are always worse in the end than the ache itself.

John Eldredge, from "The Journey of Desire" ISBN 0-7852-6716-6 Page 184

… we have only three options: (1) to be alive and thirsty, (2) to be dead, or (3) to be addicted. There are no other choices. Most of the world lives in addiction; most of the church has chosen deadness. The Christian is called to the life of holy longing.

John Eldredge, from "The Journey of Desire" ISBN 0-7852-6716-6 P 182-183

Thanks to Vern for sending me these quotes.

Luke 10 in Austin

Here are some comments from the attendees of the Luke10 Training happening right now in Austin:

This conference has been transformational in my understanding and thinking about the House Church. The interactive times were amazing. I’ve seen things in Scripture that I have never seen or understood before. God bless you ministry!

Shawn Sullivan, Impact Ministries

It continues to amaze us the way God moves upon his people when they cometogether in small family setting, interacting amongst each other concerning the things of the Lord. We’re so thankful for the Dale’s who understand this point and are holding conferences concerning the simple church in this setting. God has truly blessed us and His revelation has blessed us with understanding that we needed. We hope that these Luke 10 conferences can go across the United States. It is truly a unique way of conferencing around home churches.

Bob and Virginia

God not only opened my eyes to new things and paradigms of ministry, but He ministered to me in my personal walk with Him. The week-long format of living together in community at Luke 10 allowed us to minister into each others hearts as we sought God for His direction and revelation in our lives. For me, God deepened, even turning upside down, my understanding of listening to the Holy Spirit and letting the Lord be in control. Our study of Luke 10 opened my heart to the love and power of blessing others in the Lord which opens the doors to His gospel coming not in word but in power. I came to learn more about house churches, but I learned God’s heart and His word in my life, empowering the explosion of what He is doing among the nations. Thank you, Tony and Felicity. Thank you Lord—Your kingdom come.

Carrie Woodard, Kansas City, MO

Having made a fresh commitment to make disciples and form them into small communities of Christ, Priscilla and I came to the Luke 10 Training Course to receive from others who desire the same and are more experienced. We have been blessed beyond what we could have imagined!

We have seen gifts of the Holy Spirit stirred up and are going away with a passion to reach the lost through rapid church planting. It has been such a blessing to be with everyone over these 6 days. We love you all. Thank you Tony and Felicity for your faithfulness and your obvious love for Father, Son and Holy Spirit; Because His love has so permeated your lives, your love flows to others – which you abundantly released upon us.

Charles and Priscilla Tims, Memphis, TN.

The Luke 10 conference offered wonderful fellowship, impartation, and vision for the neighborhoods of our nation. His kingdom is coming, the tide is rising and He is settling His heart for the house-church within His people. Breathe on us breath of God! Thanks Tony and Felicity! You are a gift.

Julie Ross

What a blessing the Luke 10 has been. We are grateful for the impartation and the experience of church life, great fellowship, awesome food and vision for taking the church into our neighborhoods and nations.

Bill Ross

Awesome time of sharing, confirmation, and encouragement….

John Ivey

Dreams long dead coming alive through this wonderful time of refreshing. And yet the revelation of Jesus in our hearts is still to unfold beyond imagination. My borders just got enlarged. Thank you, Tony and Felicity, for pouring out the love of God upon us and giving us a place to receive marvelous impartations of the Spirit. It will be exciting to see what comes forth.

Blessings, Karen

I think that, for me, this has probably been the most significant conference I have ever been to, although it may quite well NOT be the most significant one in the years to come in light of what the Holy Spirit is doing these days. I look forward to the adventure of it all and pray for strength for the times when it is more obvious that we are in a war with a desperate enemy who is increasingly cornered and soon to be completely overcome! God bless you!

Henry A. Digby

Kingdom Mentality

I received an email today from Jim Yost, a missionary/church planter in Indonesia. In the email he made the comment:

We're part of the house church movement in Indonesia though I shy away from titles anymore like "cell church", "G-12", "house church" because it makes us start thinking exclusive like one is a better improvement on the other. So I come back to saying "community-based ministry" and that can include them all.

I think this mentality is incredibly healthy. You see, I don't think it's about the "type" of church that you are a part of. For a season of my life, I was a part of a 10,000 plus member "Mega" church, in that church I heard some of the best teaching every single week. That church, in Tulsa, OK, did an incredible job of reaching out to the community that it was part of. My Brother, in Waco, TX, is a part of a "Cell" church that is one of the most missional, church planting churches I've ever seen. They've seen cells planted all over the world. In England and here in the states, I have friends who are part of denominational churches that are incredible lights in their communities and are very open to planting all types of structures.

Do each of these churches have strengths AND weaknesses, absolutely. Right now, on our spiritual journey, God has us meeting in living rooms in a "House" church. But, I think it would be arrogant and stupid for me to think that we have some kind of monopoly on good, healthy church. Are there things that I think are really, really good about the community and life that we have, YES! But, I also know that we have a lot of weaknessees as a a movement. I think we all need to take a Kingdom mentality of BOTH/AND rather then EITHER/OR and look at church in a region as the body of christ, his Church. Let's figure out ways to bless each other, learn from each other, and work together to reach this world for Christ.

Colorado Strategy

I know I'm sending you a lot of stuff but what I see is the Lord beginning to birth DAWN Projects in many places. The following is the exhortation that Kenny sent out to his 11 DOMs in Colorado. What he is essentially doing is challenging each of them to begin a DAWN Project in their geographical region. Ft Collins has the potential for being a prototype for the state. Pray for our meeting there in 2/27. -John

THE CORD

Two people can accomplish more than twice as much as one person. A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken. Ecc. 4:9-12

WHAT WILL IT TAKE?

Not what can I do or what can we do, but what will it take to saturate Colorado with the gospel of Christ?

Continue Reading…

Twenty Commandments for Culture-Changers

Twenty Commandments for Culture-Changers

P. Andrew Sandlin | A Modest Attempt to Shake Loose the Ineffectual Status Quo

1. Change in history is inevitable; get used to it.

2. Be theologically conservative and strategically progressive.

3. You can’t have too many friends.

Continue Reading…

Everything I know about Church Planting I learned in Network Marketing

It seems crazy, but the best training I've had on how to reach people and plant churches has come from my days in a network marketing business. I was mentored and trained (or was it discipled) and shown by example how to reach people with a business opportunity and give them hope. Isn't that what the gospel is supposed to do? Give people hope.

So many concepts, like starting a new meeting in someones house if there's not an existing meeting close by for them to plug into. Contacting new people every day. Showing the plan every day. The same habits when applied to evangelism and church planting would make one so effective. Even the concept of pooring your life into a few leaders who will then reach others is a concept taught extensively in the business world. I was always amazed when I would sit in arena with 5,000 business owners and someone would ask from stage, how many of you have shown the plan 3+ times a week for the last 90 days. Only 1 or 2 people would stand up. The moral of the story, it doesn't take many leaders who are willing to really dedicate their lives to something to reach 1000's of people.

What can we learn about reaching people from the world of business?

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