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Church planting Simple Church

A wonderful example of the power of listening to someone’s story

A couple of posts ago, I talked about the power of story telling and of listening to others' stories. Dan Hubbell emailed me with this wonderful example from one of his trips.  Enjoy it!  But also learn from it. When we were in China on one of our early missions about seven years ago, we were equipping… Read More

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Church planting Simple Church

Core competencies: Recognizing a ripe harvest field

What makes a ripe harvest field? Many of us are living in comfortable suburban homes, and we assume that our neighborhoods will make a great harvest field. But we may be trying to reap a harvest in the wrong places.  Jesus gave some indication of what makes a ripe harvest. For example, he said: "The… Read More

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Church planting Simple Church

Core competencies: Story telling

A couple of the core competencies that I mentioned in the last post have provoked some comment. So this post will look at the first of these: telling stories. One of my favorite quotes comes from Austrian philosopher Ivan Illich. When asked whether he would change society by revolution or reformation, he answered, "Neither of… Read More

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Church planting Simple Church

Ways to see more harvest: 6 core skills

I am no fisherman (in the natural, that is)! On the few occasions when I have tried fishing, I have never caught anything. In fact, I vividly remember one occasion when Tony and I were taken fishing by some friends on a shrimping boat in Canada. It was a spectacular setting, mountains in the background,… Read More

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Church planting Simple Church

Ways to see more harvest: a paradigm shift

For years, we have invited people to come to church.  Successful evangelism has consisted of persuading our friends and family to join us at church.  We have run special and exciting meetings with professional bands and gifted speakers.  Even many of our simple/house churches have had this same mindset; invite someone to church, and pray… Read More

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Church planting Simple Church

Ways to see a greater harvest: 5 things to do if your church is not focused outward

  Neil Cole likes to define the DNA of house/simple/organic church as: Divine Truth Nurturing Relationships Apostolic Mission Most of our simple/organic churches have the first two—we base what we do and teach on Biblical truth, and we have a depth of community based on family relationships that others envy.  But many new churches, especially… Read More

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Church planting Simple Church

Ways to see a greater harvest #2

 Are we willing to sit in the smoking section? (Neil Cole)   Many of us believers are so busy with our Christian friends or with church related activities that we have no time to make friends with other people. Not only that, some have an inbuilt fear that we will somehow be contaminated by rubbing… Read More

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Church planting Simple Church Teaching from India

Ways to see a greater harvest #1

      I recently reread the book, "destined for the throne" by Paul Bilheimer. The main premise of the book is based on a quote by John Wesley: "God does nothing except an answer to prayer." Bilheimer goes on to explain that God has chosen to limit himself in order that we might get on-the-job… Read More

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Church planting Simple Church

15 reasons why we don’t see harvest

  Here are some reasons why we may not see the kind of harvest we long for: We are so involved with other believers we do not have time for friendship with those who do not yet know Jesus. We are fearful of being "contaminated" by too much contact with the world.  Lack of the… Read More

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Church planting Simple Church

Becoming a commercial fisherman (part two)

 Continuing the topic of church planting: I immediately went through the Gospels looking at every reference to fishing. There were several. Even though in Mongolia, I did not have a concordance, it became apparent that several different methods of fishing were described. Sometimes the disciples threw or cast their nets into the water (e.g. Matthew… Read More