Our text yesterday was John 15 and the emphasis was on being disciples. We talked about paying attention.
I touched on three themes
- To abide in Christ is to pay attention to the narrative of Jesus in the past – that of course is primarily in the Gospels – and also to what Christ says to us today through the Holy Spirit
- We abide in Christ so that we might know the love of God and know what God is doing
- Only when we abide in Christ’s love together can we united, obedient and bear fruit
Today I want to explore a second text that arises from my research into forming and educating lifelong disciples, and in a sense to focus on what disciples do. Again I want to link it with one of the stories from my research about growing disciples.
In this time when we seem to reinventing church, what is essential and what is secondary?
Our text is a very familiar one from Acts chapter 2. Before we read and discuss the text, I’m going to invite you in a moment to take yourself back in your imagination to the time of Pentecost. The invitation is to place yourself within the story, not just as en exercise in creative thinking, but as an act of prayer – to listen for the Spirit today.
What has been your richest experience of Christian community?
My first answer would be when on four occasions I was a member of a Scripture Union Beach Mission at Noosa in the late 70’s. Yes, Noosa. “Lord, here am I! Send me! About 40 of us would spend a week in Bible study, prayer and sharing the gospel with unsuspecting holiday-makers. And playing Jesus songs.
But I had a much more profound experience a decade later when we were living in the US. Through the university, we applied to stay with a host family over Christmas, and ended up in Lebanon, Pennsylvania with a Mennonite family.Continue Reading