We are looking forward to being a part of Exponential 2019. I asked their team to give us a post to share with you guys some of the Exponential team's thinking about mobilization - a huge value for Churchteams as well. Here it is. Enjoy.
Have you ever sensed something was off about the way we tend to mobilize people? Maybe you have this sense that there’s a better way, but you’re not sure what that is. Perhaps you’re wondering, Do I have this mobilization ladder up against the wrong wall?
Down deep, you know the Church that Jesus died and rose for is designed and made for so much more!
Together with a team of leaders, we’ve looked at mobilization to identify and unpack six paradigm shifts and specific moves based on Ephesians 1-6 that our churches can make to revolutionize how we mobilize people and multiply disciples who multiply disciples and plant churches that plant churches. We believe these six shifts have the potential to start a multiplication movement today.
Shift 1 – From More Effort to More Jesus (Ephesians 1): Scripture shows us that Jesus has chosen and appointed His Church to express his fullness into every corner of culture and sphere of society. Throughout his message to the Ephesian Christians, Paul tells us how he does and doesn’t see the Church: as a body, not a building; as an identity, not an activity; and as the people of God called to fill every corner with the fullness of Jesus. If we believe and embrace that, then the question is: How are you equipping every disciple to grow in the Lordship of Jesus and in their ability to share the gospel where they live, work, study and play?
Shift 2 – From More Volunteers to More Masterpieces (Ephesians 2): Paul reminds us that the ministry of the Church is all the people of God activated in their unique masterpiece mission, revealing the fullness of Jesus. As leaders, we have a responsibility to lead our church to help every disciple investigate their personal calling that mobilizes them for a one-of-a-kind mission for more. Every disciple is a unique, handcrafted-by-God vessel for expressing the fullness of Jesus.
Shift 3 – From More Guilt to More Love (Ephesians 3): Paul prays that these people he loves (the church of Ephesus) would know the deep love of Christ that surpasses knowledge. As we marinate in God’s love for us and in us, that love will overflow through us. His love is the only sufficient motivation for mobilizing others—not guilt. We grow in this fullness through what I call the Be-Do-Go framework: being disciples (Be) who make disciples of others (Do) wherever we are (Go). It finds its significance within the context of our primary calling to be disciples who make disciples wherever we go, expressing the deep love of Christ.
Shift 4 – From More Hierarchy to More Missionaries (Ephesians 4): In this chapter, Paul describes how God has gifted the church to equip and mobilize His people for works of service for the purpose of building up the body of Christ. Jesus himself assigns the functional gifts needed to see the church reach its full maturity. Are we organizing around a lead pastor and / or lead team with a primarily come and see approach? Or, are we organizing around the gifts needed for the church to reach its full maturity in Christ as we send every day missionaries to the unique mission fields where they work, live, study, and play? We need to help people “go and be the fullness of Jesus!” Without an organizing system that mobilizes all of God’s people, we will struggle to carry His fullness into every corner of society.
Shift 5 – From More Programs to More Mission Fields (Ephesians 5): Paul’s direction and this shift are all about the where (the Go). The people of God have already been sent and strategically placed by Jesus. And for many, those places are outside the walls of your church building. Mission begins by disciples expressing the fullness of Jesus where they live, work, study and play as missionaries with unique mission fields. Our “go” is to embrace our mission field and, as Paul writes, “make the most of every opportunity, understanding what the Lord’s will is” (Eph. 5:16).
Shift 6 – From More Strategy to More Surrender (Ephesians 6): Paul commands us, “finally, be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power.” He reminds us that our struggle is not against flesh and blood but against the powers of this dark world…” (verses 10-11). As Scripture shows us and as you’ve probably already discovered by now, the enemy will do everything possible to thwart God’s plan for more for His people. But we are called to win this battle.
When we begin to surrender our strategies and our belief that we’re building the church while others help by filling the spots we’ve predetermined, we begin to wage the war Christ has called us to fight. At that point, people begin to understand that they are the church—and when that sense of identity becomes clear, we start to take ground from the enemy.
We can measure our success as leaders by how we motivate, equip and mobilize the people of God to respond to Jesus’ call to of make disciples who make disciples.
... For even more, see the expanded, original post by Todd Wilson here.