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Leaders want to make disciples, transform lives
Melissa Lilley, BSC Communications
February 15, 2011

Leaders want to make disciples, transform lives

Leaders want to make disciples, transform lives
Melissa Lilley, BSC Communications
February 15, 2011

From research about why young adults are leaving the church

to why so many churches are plateaued or declining, it’s not hard to find

evidence pointing out the desperate need for transformation in churches across

the country.

The latest study from LifeWay research takes on a different

approach.

Transformational Church focuses not so much on the negative

trends as it does on what needs to happen in order to reverse those trends.

A major part of seeing transformation in the church comes

when churches stop measuring success by the numbers and start measuring success

by whether or not lives are being changed.

Find it Here 2011: Embracing Christ is an effort to help

churches focus not on building a larger budget, or bigger buildings, or better

attendance, but to focus on helping people obey the commands of Jesus Christ to

follow Him and abide in Him.

This type of life transformation only comes when churches

are committed to making disciples.

“Through a simple and intentional discipleship strategy,

churches can decide how to customize the Find it Here emphasis to make

disciples in their own context,” said Lynn Sasser, Baptist State Convention of

North Carolina (BSC) executive leader for congregational services.

“Through Find it Here we pray that North Carolina Baptist

churches across this state will, by the power of the Holy Spirit, develop a

disciple-making culture in the church that leads to radical lifestyle changes.

We pray this will produce disciples who are ready to follow Christ no matter

the cost.”

Find it Here 2011 includes two emphases: Following Christ

(spring 2011) and Abiding in Christ (fall 2011). With each emphasis churches

are encouraged to commit to:

  • Pray for disciples.
  • Preach on discipleship.
  • Teach discipleship in classrooms and in homes.
  • Make disciples by participating in a 2011 Easter

    evangelism emphasis.

  • Be disciples in the community by serving.

Free resources to help churches carry out the Find it Here

emphasis are available for download at www.finditherenc.org. This site features

videos, sermon outlines, Bible study lessons and prayer/devotional guides.

Churches can also sign up and pledge support to making this a year marked by

intentional disciple-making.

Easter Evangelism

Find it Here 2011 is the second year in a three-year

emphasis on evangelism, discipleship and missions. The first phase of Find it

Here, evangelism, kicked off last year. Churches committed to intentional

evangelism and to baptizing new believers.

Discipleship cannot happen without evangelism because

discipleship cannot begin until a person has heard the gospel and received

Jesus Christ as personal Lord and Savior.

Therefore, pastors and church leaders are asked this year,

as they were last year, to lead their churches to do the following:

  • Pray for non-believers (family members, friends, neighbors

    and work associates) by name.

  • Invite those non-believers to attend the Easter Sunday

    morning worship service.

  • Preach an evangelistic sermon and extend an evangelistic

    invitation.

  • Baptize new converts on Easter Sunday or the Sunday

    following.

Missions in 2012

The Great Commission in Matthew 28:18-20 does not end with

baptism, nor does it end with making disciples. Believers are commanded to make

disciples of all nations — which means believers are to take the gospel to

those who have never heard, whether crossing the street to talk with a neighbor

or crossing the ocean to share the gospel in a place void of any evangelical

witness.

Missions is the focus of the final Find it Here phase. This

phase will be introduced to North Carolina Baptists later this year so they

will be ready to launch a missions emphasis in 2012.Similar to last year’s Find

it Here evangelism focus and this year’s discipleship focus, resources will be

available to help North Carolina Baptists learn what it means to be on-mission.

“The biblical command from the Lord is to live missional lives,” said Chuck

Register, BSC executive leader for church planting and missions development.

“Missions involves a strategic, intentional, verbal communication of the

gospel. We must develop a missions lifestyle.”

When all three aspects of Find it Here — evangelism,

discipleship and missions — work together to produce life transformation among

believers, churches are changed, communities are changed, and more people hear

about the salvation that only comes through Jesus Christ.

For more information about Find it Here visit

www.finditherenc.org, e-mail [email protected] or call (800) 395-5102,

ext. 5648.

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Lake Norman: Discipline produces disciples

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