3 predictions for 2014

For most of us, the New Year is marked by a sense of anticipation. The old year is done with; what will 2014 hold? Here are three of my ideas for what 2014 might bring for those of us in the simple/organic/house church movement (or those with an interest in the role of women in ministry).

  1. There will continue to be an increasing emphasis on disciple-making movements. Profoundly effective disciple-making movements are beginning to emerge in this country, with, at this stage, hundreds of new believers stretching several generations. This is an exciting development, and one that I believe will continue to gain momentum. More to come on this in future posts.
  2. The simple/organic/house church movement will maybe lose some people as those who joined it to be fashionable drop out. However, it will become a foundational platform for other things God is doing–for example, discipleship in the marketplace, Kingdom finances etc.
  3. The conversation about women in the Kingdom will increase in intensity and become a (probably controversial) focal point.

Am I right? Only time will tell. What do you think will happen in 2014?

What will 2014 hold

Photo Credit: thomasstache via Compfight cc

13 thoughts on “3 predictions for 2014”

  1. This year (this next decade) in UK & USA will see a “hands on” practical gospel reap great reward. Those who give shelter, money, food etc to the many financially struggling families without strings attached, just a desire to love their neighbours, will see a real harvest of souls. There may be a line drawn between a “State approved” church and an underground, grass roots one, the former persecuting the latter and an attempted ban on “home church”. More than ever there will be a need for communities of believers who love and support each other and who hold “love feasts” to feed the poor.

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    1. Sarah, I think you are a bit further down the line in the UK than we are here in the US. Christianity is still socially acceptable here–but I doubt it will be for much longer. And I totally agree with your conclusions.

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  2. Hi Felicity, happy new year to you!

    I’m inclined to think that 2014 will see further movement on a number of things evident in 2013:

    1. The refining of the western church, especially in the US – including an emphasis on integrity; grace over judgment & legalism; and “hands on” practical gospel as Sarah says. Increasingly I believe people will walk away from the sort of leadership which builds the leader up and emphasises their gifts and ministry, and be attracted towards the sort of servant leadership that Pope Francis is showing, which builds up the saints for the work of ministry.

    2. Continued movement on “hot” issues, not just women in ministry as you suggest, but also attitudes to gays, materialism, Biblical inerrancy and universalism/exclusivism – whether we agree all these are right or not.

    3. New approaches to evangelism based on the above – less confronting, less black & white (in the old Billy Graham mould), more based on Jesus in the NT Wright pattern, based more on “first they belong, then they believe”, and showing love and grace in actions before words.

    4. I think the church in the west will become more marginalised, for both good and bad reasons, and we’ll have to learn to live with less privilege.

    5. Meanwhile, in the rest of the world ….. we’ll see more Muslims believing in Jesus while staying Muslim, more christians involved in third world issues like rescuing slave children and ongoing growth in all sorts of places.

    That’s my initial thoughts, perhaps partly based on hope, but certainly also based on what seems to me to be happening already.

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    1. UnkleE, these are great and insightful thoughts and I agree with all of them. As Christianity becomes more marginalized and the world gets darker, then the light of true disciples of Jesus shines more brightly. And I’d love to see an authentic Christian witness–Pope Francis and NT Wright style prevail. Not to say the other hasn’t been used by God powerfully in its time, but we seem to have moved on.

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  3. Good insights uncleE and Sarah. The current Church in America will be reminded again of what Jesus did in the Gospels. He ate with sinners, ministered to women, was shown by Luke to be equatable to women (study Luke and see for yourself) and destroyed the self righteous. I sense prayer will increase, followed by prophetic worship and displays of God’s glory released everywhere. I sense the Church re-thinking how it does discipleship and covenant, not for rules but for relationships and commitment. I see the days of coffee and cake with people being replaced by real fellowship where openness and the light of Christ can penetrate the hearts of all. I sense movements where denominationalism will not matter, all that will matter will be people hungry for the glory of God.

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  4. My husband and I are starting a church in our living room. We’ve talked about it for about a year and are finally just doing it. We’re not even calling our little gathering (which has no members at this point) a “church”, just a place people can come to meditate on scripture and share their stories. I just discovered your blog via Frank Viola and I think I’ll find it a valuable resource as we start to do “simple church”. BTW – definitely not in this for the trendy aspect. Doing it because my spirit feels like it is drying up in the traditional church mold.
    I have been blogging on the topic recently – http://www.creating-mom.com/leaving-the-church-but-not-really/

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    1. I’m excited about how the Lord is leading you and your husband, Carly. It’s always an adventure with the Holy Spirit. Keep us in touch with how it goes, and if there’s anything we can do to help, get in touch.

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  5. Felicity

    I’m so excited what I see here because the Lord was leading me to similar conclusions, especially as they relate to #1 and #2. I believe we are coming to a crossroads of sorts, where we can learn to embrace some of the lessons that our disciple making movement brothers and sisters are learning in the mission field and here at home or we will be faced with many who came looking for an authentic expression of the body will become disappointed and leave. We will most likely see both happening simultaneously as different pockets of house churches go different directions.

    But the Lord is so good to lead us and direct us, and so I find it encouraging that you are sensing some of the same things. Thanks for being the voice of the Lord through what you do.

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    1. Thanks for the encouragement, Travis. I agree with your assessment here. I think we need to make the transition to an emphasis on making disciples

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