Having A Heart For The Poor Means Having A Heart For God by Martin Buehlmann

Not that long ago my wife and I were sitting in our kitchen, preparing a nice family dinner. Suddenly our doorbell rang. Going to the door we saw Ghebremariam, a 38 year old woman from Eritrea who works for Mariam. Ghebremariam is a refugee from Eritrea, a neighboring country to Ethiopia. She had to leave three children behind and has now been in Europe for four years.

We have known Ghebremariam for quite a while, since Christmas when she came to our home for a party for the lonely and enjoyed it immensely. As she sat with us in the kitchen, she began to share more of her heartbreaking story. When she came to Europe four years ago she hoped to find a place of peace, a home, a hiding place from all the abuses, all the arbitrariness and unrighteousness she had to live under. But now, as she was sharing her story, crying aloud, she told us she was just refused as a refugee, being left without any rights and without support. Our dinner changed from a leisure time to a wonderful expression of care, love, acceptance. We listened, cried with her, hugged her, prayed for her and finally blessed her with some money. After two hours her countenance lifted and she smiled slightly. When she left we knew that we had expressed the kindness of Jesus to this dear woman.

Suddenly it dawned on me. It is Good Friday and Jesus has visited our home. We were able to console Him, for Jesus says in the Gospel of Matthew chapter 25, that whatever we have done to one of the least, we have done to Him.

Serving others means meeting Jesus in the lives of others, sharing their pain and helplessness. As we are faithfully doing this as an expression of our lifestyle, it becomes a continuous prayer and invitation for Christ to come.

12 Things Your Church Needs to Know…by Steve Sjogren

…by the time it’s 12 months old

 

1. Don’t take yourselves too seriously
You are important to God. Isn’t it enough to know that without the need to prove it all the time? Walk in humility. Obey. Keep in step with the Spirit.

2. Outreach is your lifeblood
It’s tempting to settle in on the point of problem centeredness, especially if you’ve had a modicum of success. People will ask that you “pastor” them instead of persevering instead of living out your roles as Evangelists. Pastoring at that point is a trap! Don’t fall for it. Tell people to go to counseling who need help. Pray for them while you stand up after a gathering. Don’t you dare see them more than once in the name of ministering to them.

3. There’s always a process to what you’re doing
God is at work with your people and those you seek to reach. God is continually doing something though we are sometimes frustrated with his timetable. Our desire is for details to work out quickly. None of us are naturally patient, but then again God’s work is more stable than ours.

4. As you serve a powerful spiritual atmosphere is created inside and outside your church
As you consistently love, serve and show generosity to outsiders you build an almost tactile reality around your church that impacts others that has a profound spiritual effect on others at dimensions that are difficult to easily see or measure on the surface of things but is real just the same.

As people nearby experience this they will change their perceptions about God and recognize that he is positive – not negative, loving – not necessarily judgmental.

As you serve you are also going to shape the spiritual atmosphere inside your church community as you walk out the heart of God. Your people will see that serving is part and parcel of the normal Christian life.

5. Others are more important than your venture
Don’t worry about your success. As you serve, God will show up in your midst. His presence is the greatest guarantee of success.

6. It’s vital to teach on living generously if vision is to succeed
People will tell you they like your church because you don’t talk about money “all the time like other churches.” It’s tempting to fall into the trap of under emphasizing this vital topic. Of course, your people need to be challenged. Deep down they crave this instruction for their growth’s sake.

7. A vision for church planting
Set a goal from the beginning of your launch as to how many and how fast you will produce your first of several plants. Talk about that frequently from the front…with a smile of faith!

8. See the city as your mission field
World missions are great but God is first interested in capturing the hearts of your church with the immediate. The “ends of the earth” is safe because all it requires is a check and an occasional prayer. God has in mind that your “Jerusalem” will come before the ends of the earth. Serve them. Care for the poor down the street in practical ways. Pray for them door to door in ten-second segments.

9. Worship stirs the presence of the Spirit
One of the top couple of necessities for success is Spirit-inspired worship. If your worship doesn’t bring the presence of the Spirit then change it until it until it does. You won’t succeed in much else till you do.

10. Ministry to the poor is basic to a discipleship
We are all – 100% of us – are called to care for the Poor in some way. Ministry to the Poor is part of any outreach emphasis. I highly recommend you make this a vital part of your initial foray into the community. No matter where you live in the world there are people in need within a 15-minute drive, if not next door.

11. If you don’t make outreach the focus it won’t be any of focus
That’s just the way it works. Outreach will be relegated to a program side by side with ushering, working in the parking lot and making coffee with about as much passion as the other ones mentioned above. It will be an utterly ineffective token effort that is in place for members to point as something that says their church cares about the Lost even though everyone knows there’s nothing effective being accomplished.

12. The way your senior leader(s) live and model ministry (and life!) is the greatest determiner as to how the local church will approach discipleship
Your church is like a flock of geese flying in formation on a journey. At the tip of the flock is a lead goose directing the rest toward in a certain direction. Where that leader goes, the rest of the formation follows. It’s a simple principle. Like it or not, the leader is carefully followed whether the rest of the flock understands the principle or not. It’s intuitive.

Regardless of that leader’s natural inclination, it’s vital that they become the person the flock needs in order to grow. Any person – any leader – can change by merely determining to change. It’s a matter of making a decision then leaning into the empowering of the Spirit for change to happen. God will show up and empower that decision. It is easy for a leader to cop out by thinking they don’t possess the needed gifts in the area where help is needed. As that leader merely shows up with an available attitude God will provide the needed gifts, energy and physical resources. As St. John of the Cross said, “Where there is no love, bring love, and there will be love.”

4 Warm Weather Outreach Ideas by Janie Sjogren

It’s getting warmer and this changes what we can do to show love to our communities.  Take a look at your supply closet, and do some spring-cleaning to freshen everything up.  The typical toilet-cleaning kits and windshield washing supplies are a start, but add some more spark to your outreaches with a good variety of options at the ready. Here are four outreach ideas for warmer weather.

Put A Twist On The Typical Car Wash – Make It a $1 Car Wash

Get big banners that read, “Free Car Wash—No Kidding!” or “$1 Car Wash!”  In the $1 Car Wash version, you give the person $1 after washing their car, with a connect card explaining why you are doing this, “This is a simple way to say God loves you, no strings attached!”

Set up on a street that has significant traffic flow, with water access and an easy entrance and exit. Use soccer cones to direct traffic where you want it.  Create an inviting sitting area with soccer chairs and iced down drinks in a cooler.

Place several high-energy, cheerleader types on corners near your site.  Tell them to shake their signs, wave their hands and generally direct people into the car wash.

Make sure to have friendly people to greet the drivers, and to talk to people.  Don’t get so busy washing that you forget to pass out a card and an explanation that you are doing this as a community service project to show them a little of God’s love.

Put Your Coolers To Work!

Rolling coolers are great for water and pop outreaches.  If your church can afford one, get a large Ice Maker to always have ice at the ready.  Coolers also work well to transport hot dogs and hamburgers wrapped in fast-food foil wrappers.  The cooler acts like a steamer, and the goods arrive warm.   Offer with individually wrapped condiments, and deliver around 11am while people are still hungry.

Ice Cream Coupon Give-Away

Ice cream is a happy food!  Buy a quantity of ice cream coupons at a discount.  Connect with your local ice cream shop, or with McDonald’s or Chick-Fil-A.  Explain that you are doing, a community service project, and that you plan on giving the ice cream coupons away.

Places to go include campuses, parks, neighborhoods, sporting events, and skate parks.  Give out a Connection Card with each Ice Cream Coupon.

Festival Survival Packs

Where food and drink are being sold as part of a community event, don’t be rude and give away drinks or food.  Instead, make up little packs of items in a small zip-lock bag.

Items could include:  Towelettes for cleaning sticky fingers, small samples of lotion or suntan cream, a peppermint hard candy to freshen breath, tissues, golf pencils and small pads of post-its or pads made from clean-cut scrap paper.

Don’t forget to give out outreach connect cards during your spring outreaches. If you need high-quality outreach cards, you can click on any of the links above to see the great selection of designs we offer, or simply go to this link below:

http://www.kindnessresources.com/Outreach-Cards-C10.aspx

5 Obstacles to Evangelism by Doug Murren

Everything that has to do with communication runs into some hurdles.  Bringing a message of hope can even have hurdles it must face.  When trying to nudge someone into Jesus’ arms there are five obstacles to evangelism you should be aware of.

One:   What options will I give up?

People are smart they know in reality nothing is free.   And following Christ does have some requisites and we all know it.  The gift of faith via prevenient grace is one. The willingness to repent is another.   And the beginning of the experience of total surrender is another.  Turning salvation into a quick prayer just isn’t honest.

You need to be honest and make part of your message a clear indicator of what options you give up when you receive Christ.  And what new options you gain.

If you can get your friends beyond this consideration you have gone along way toward doing some real nudging.

Two:  Am I making a mistake?

Believe it or not one of the chief fears of people is that they may be making a mistake.   People have an aversion to being wrong.  People have to be convinced that they are making a credible step or they will resist your message.

Do you know enough to thwart this great fear the enemy uses?  Let’s face it a personal experience of your own can be very authoritative and genuine.  Be ready to help a friend know that they are not making a mistake.  Show that the greater mistake is to not receive the message.

Three:  Peer Pressure

The next question you need to work through is, what will this cost me relationally?

This is a big one.  In our community we have a strong Mormon presence.  And we have many converts from Mormonism in our church.  Their step toward the Gospel was a costly one for most.

People do decide to change or not change partly based on how will their friends think about there choice.  It helps to address this hurdle when nudging.  How you go about that will depend upon the person and their circumstances.  I like to reference this issue when I am speaking publicly about the need for Christ in my friend’s lives.

Four:   Am I going to look foolish?

I think this fear is a predominate one in people’s lives.  No one wants to look like a nut case.  It is essential that we uphold the wisdom of a decision for Christ.  I like to recount great leaders who have been Christians when I present the Gospel to a friend.

I like supporting deal with the foolishness of not deciding for Christ when I have someone’s ear.  Churches should have an environment that makes sense for this reason.  People are already afraid of looking foolish and if we confirm it to them we lose.

Five:  Is it going to cost me too much?

Everyone has a threshold as to what life currency he or she is willing to spend.  I like to make people aware of that fact that God was not cost adverse when He gave His only Son for us.

We shouldn’t try and make it too easy for people or we will have faulty conversions.  A quick easy careful prayer just isn’t receiving Christ.  I must pause and surrender fully to Him and His vision for me not my own.  It cost everything to be a true follower of Christ and we should address this.

Why Kindness? It’s Naturally Supernatural by Steve Sjogren

There is a lot of talk these days about the word “Kind.” There is so much chatter these days, in fact, one might even think kindness is a human attribute. Much like love. With both ideas / words, there are dymensions of the idea. With both, the concept has been so watered down, it is becoming difficult to nail down what is meant when people use the word in conversation.

As a word smith, I move we take the time to clarify this powerful word, AND we honor term that is of such enduring significance, it nearly belongs on the Periodic Chart of elements – on the bottom part of that chart if you are familiar with that from a chemistry class. That part of the chart deals with elements that endure for such long time frames we refer to them as having “Half Lives.” When humans touch such elements, there is no missing that one has been touched. Life will never be the same when anything with a half-life has touched our lives.  Such is the power of kindness.

Kindness is everlasting. It is! A touch of kindness goes on eternally. When one has experienced an act of kindness – you have been served or you have served others – that touch, that expression will echo all hearts involved for the rest of earthly life. How is this possible?  As Jesus said, “With man, this is cannot be done, but with God all things all things are possible.”  Kindness is from God. Human effort cannot produce kindness. True kindness never has originated from man apart from God and it never will. Only as God’s kindness flows through available people can anyone experience true kindness.

Kindness is Naturally Supernatural

What humans often confuse with with true kindness is actually ‘Niceness.’  Niceness is great. Hurrah for niceeness!  There are far worse things for one to be caught up with than niceness.  Make no mistake however – human niceness is utterly different than the kindness of God.

The Apostle Paul clarifies the untangled way of kindness in this verse:

“God’s kindness leads to a radical life change…” Romans 2:4, The Message Version

 “God’s kindness”

If you have lived more than a decade, you hopefully have discovered that those things that last originate from God. The temporal is apart from God’s eternal strength.

“Radical life change”

When God changes a life, that life changes for real and for the endurance.  That change occurs from the inside out. This is no self-imposed attempt at self-betterment. This is no resolution. This is no ‘I’ll never again’ try harder self-help. God has mercy on us by doing what we could not accomplish in a thousand lifetimes of a grand effort.

Kindness is contageous

The kindness of God Paul refers to flows from one human to another. God is by nature kind among other aspects of his diverse character.  The scriptures clarify when God changes a person’s life, a new normal way of living begins. Our bodies look the same, but spiritually we are transformed. We are converted. We are turned inside out. Entirely new ways of living and seeing occur. One of the primary overflows of that life is kindness. The kindness of God himself. (Galatians 5:22, 23)

God invites us to jump onboard!

Once we click into the kindness of God, at whatever point in our journey in life – time of following Jesus, it is as though blinders fall from our eyes.  In my life, though I had followed ‘Hard after God’ I had never picked up on the many verses that illustrate the concepts shared in this article alone. I hear this story each day several times via emails and texts – “I can’t believe I never got it before now! How could I have not seen those verses? I’m onboard now. I want to move forward – I want to serve, I want to live in the power of God’s kindness!”

There is a universal light bulb beginning to blink over hundreds of leaders worldwide. The conclusion being discovered is: “We need to show our culture the reality of God. Information without first providing credibility does not work.” This credibility building sequence is the way life has worked for all people of all time of all cultures. This simple request is reasonable. Jesus operated from this perspective.

Let’s begin to live from this new normal way of life as well!

4 Lessons Kindness Outreach Teaches You…But Seminary Doesn’t by Samuel Aldridge

As a full time MDiv student I spend much of my time hidden behind my laptop and a pile of books and journal articles.  I debate and defend theology with other students, wrestle with Greek and Hebrew, and receive instruction on topics from church administration through to effective communication techniques; I even have classes specifically devoted to my spiritual formation.  But even with such a holistic theological education I have found there are many things that just cannot be learnt about the Christian life from the seminary classroom, or the church sanctuary.  Some of these lessons are assumed, and others are overlooked, whilst with some the theory is mentioned, but the lesson never truly learnt or understood.  To learn these lessons we have to go somewhere else.

For me that somewhere else has become the streets of my local town doing Kindness Outreaches.  I have to admit that this was never something I started off doing with the aim of educating myself, it was all about the people I was serving, and it still is, but no matter how much I think I know, I always seem to learn something new every time I go out onto the streets to serve.  So without much more ado, here are some things that Servant Evangelism has taught me…and seminary hasn’t.

1. People long to be loved

I have lost count now of the number of people that I have gone up to during Kindness Outreaches and the response has been either dumbstruck faces or tears.  Smiles are certainly the most common response I have had though.  One time I was out doing a Kindness Outreach with my wife, giving away popcorn to people at work.  She wandered into one of the businesses and on this occasion I hung around just outside the store looking through the glass store front (I think that this was only my second time doing Kindness Outreach and I was still terrified back then).  As my wife walked out of the store, having given away the popcorn, the single employee, who had been sat looking very bored and lonely in an empty shop, had a huge smile across her face.   I think that we had just made her day.

This may seem like something that should be so fundamentally understood by Christians: that our love is not just needed, but also wanted.  All too often, though, I think that we assume this is so fundamental to how the Christian should think that we overlook it.  During my time at seminary I have been a part of several discussions that have looked at church growth, development and issues surrounding the supposed “consumer congregation,” but within these talks it seems that the idea of a church growing by actively going out and loving its local community is often overlooked, apparently we just don’t seem to think that love is what the “consumer congregation” wants.  But Kindness Outreach has taught me that love is exactly what people want.

2. Community is alive and well

Once, back in October, a few of us took a truck filled with pumpkins around some of the apartment blocks in my town.  We pulled up to the first block of apartments and started talking to a group of teens stood in the parking lot, they we’re eager to take some pumpkins.  Then a remarkable thing happened: children started pouring out of the woodwork from all over the estate and formed quite a crowd around the truck as we handed out the pumpkins.  Within a few moments the truck went from bursting full to half empty.  We had managed to serve an entire complex and knocked on a total of one door. Instead the community had done the work for us, the children had been running from apartment to apartment, telling all their friends and family about the people giving away free pumpkins, and as more people found out they in turn told more people until the whole complex was aware of our presence.

I see this sort of community spirit a lot whilst I am out serving the community, perhaps most often when I am around giving out bags of food to those who need it.  As I start talking to people I often ask if they know anyone else who is in need of some free food, and whilst sometimes the person shrugs their shoulders, more often than not the person steps out of the doorway and starts pointing to other houses in the street.

3. We are part of a single catholic church

When I was out serving with free bags of food the other day something happened that I did not expect.  I was in a rundown trailer park and knocked on the door of one of the trailers, holding my breath that the fragile construction would not collapse as I knocked.  A little old lady answered the door, her arms filled with food.  She had seen what we were doing and wanted to be a part of it and so stuffed a ton more food into the bags that we were carrying.  This little, old lady was not part of our church, or even our denomination, but as we explained to her what we were doing she was still excited to help out.  In that moment our slightly different takes on theology were irrelevant, for the both of us our theology did not need to go any further than “We love because God first loved us.”

People from all sorts of backgrounds and denominations go out to do Servant Evangelism: Methodists, Baptists, Lutherans, Pentecostals, and many others.  We have all at times debated and fought over our theologies, and being at a multi-denominational seminary I sometimes find myself focusing more upon how we differ than how we are alike.  But when I am on that doorstep doing Kindness Outreach, I wouldn’t bat an eyelid if my companion for the day was from a different denomination, for at that moment we need to go no further than “We love because God first loved us.”  And surely we, as the church, can at least agree on that much.

4. And finally…

Perhaps the most important lesson that I have learnt from doing Kindness Outreach, however, is one that arises out of all my outreach experiences.  It arises out of the fact that people need to be loved, it arises out of the fact that community is still important, it arises out of the church being able to stand as a unified whole, and it arises from every door that I have stepped up to and God has used me to make a positive difference in somebody’s life: that there is hope for the church today.  Kindness Outreach has shown me that there is a way for us to effectively shine Christ’s light to the world and, that through us Christ can impact the lives of countless people.  All that needs to be done is for us to get out there and serve.

When Servant Evangelism Becomes Routine by Marty Boller

outreachI’m not sure when the term ‘servant evangelism’ first came into play. In the early days of the Vineyard movement, Steve Sjogren was the first voice I heard talking about focusing an entire church community around the idea of serving outsiders through practical, applicable acts of kindness. My Vineyard church in Cedar Rapids, Iowa has been actively involved with servant evangelism for much of our thirteen years of our existence. In 1998, when we started our church, it was common for our small church planting team to be involved in SE events nearly every weekend.

We did free car washes, free water bottle giveaways, free neighborhood leaf-raking, free carnations to moms on Mother’s Day, free snow shoveling, etc. etc. It was common back then that when a new person started coming to our church, we knew they were staying when we saw them at our next giveaway! And while I can’t deny that we did these servant evangelism events in our earliest days because we were trying to plant a new church, over time I believe some of us actually caught the SE bug and decided it was a good thing to do even when it wasn’t all about building a new church. In truth, as I see it, servant evangelism should never be about planting or building a church, but about simply loving people we don’t know. And as Steve Sjogren has so often taught us over the years, words just can’t express how thrilling it is to give something away with no strings attached.

But isn’t it interesting that over time, we Christians can take something that is at its’ core something new and fresh and make it into a routine, or worse yet, a church project? And so it becomes with many churches as we grow and get into facilities of our own. As I look back, I see how my church went from having a ‘freely-received-freely-given’ attitude about servant evangelism to a programming mode that can make SE all about growing our church and measuring for results. Sadly, as we grow larger, the concept of random acts of kindness tend to evolve into highly-developed, well-planned-out programs of servant evangelism. And somehow, someway, the true joy of doing SE for the right reasons is nearly lost.

Today, as I write these words, I’m praying about what it might take in our well-established church to once again return to the carefree, light-hearted spontaneous SE giveaways we once enjoyed when we were smaller. I’m guessing there might be other pastors out there who share that same dream. In recent weeks, I’ve been blogging about what type of changes might need to happen in my thirteen-year-old church in order to get back to the joys of doing simple Kingdom outreach ministry just because Jesus loves it that way. Join me at my blog and chime in on some of your ideas as well. Together with God’s help, I believe we might just see a fresh wave of SE, for His Name’s sake!

4 Moves That Guard Against Burnout by Steve Sjogren

Burnout is a regular problem with anyone who reaches out. Jesus was in nearly continual outreach mode in his three-year ministry so he found it necessary to take on a number of mindsets in order to live with spiritual centeredness. Here are a few of Jesus’ points of view you might find encouraging.

Define for your assignment.
Invite God to clarify the specifics of your calling. Listen in. Take notes. God tends to speak the most clearly to me in two settings – as I wake up and as I drive. A friend suggested someone drive me around and I take short naps throughout the day in order to hear from the Lord a lot. Maybe we can try that sometime. Figure out what your primo setting is and reproduce that as often as you can. God is more interested in speaking to you than you are in hearing from him.

Focus on the outcome.
It’s easy to grow frustrated with the burdens and details of the present. We frequently hear encouragement as to the importance of aiming on the immediate only. When it comes to outreach it’s not that way. There are times when it is best to look ahead. Scripture says that Jesus endured hardship for the joy that was set before him. We are wise to follow his lead.

Flow…Give Up On Struggling
One of the most frustrating assignments in the world is the sense that we are responsible to create a spiritual result. We are incapable of making something happen in the spiritual realm – that is the work of the Holy Spirit. Our role, like Paul’s, is to plant and water what God has already begun in others’ lives. Walk in sensitivity to what God is up to. It’s usually not all that difficult to see what he’s up to. Go where the joy, the passion, the energy is. It is exciting to be in the midst of where the Spirit is at work. Find that sweet spot and live there.

Be unique.
Look for the specifics God has for you whether you’ve seen anyone else walk there or not. Perhaps there are new approaches to ministry God has in mind for you to carry out that no one else is doing. Be bold! You may think you need permission to step out. In many cases that’s not the case. You’d be surprised how often those you think you need to clear things with will be overjoyed when you simply try something new then show them the results afterwards. Nearly always you’ll receive a standing ovation!

Listen To God… Really? by Jason Taylor

It seemed I had tried it all!  From dropping thousands of eggs from a helicopter to sending out what seemed like millions of postcards, but our church was not getting the “results” that everyone else had gotten.  I hired coaches and mentors who told me “how” to plant the church.  I did everything by the book, but the results were minimal in comparison to what everyone else was “getting”.  Was there something wrong with me?  Was I really called?  Is this really what God wanted me to do, start a church from scratch?

I still remember the day that I just came to a realization that I needed to stop listening to coaches, books, and blogs first and start listening to what God was saying through the Holy Spirit for our church in our town.  That’s when everything changed!  I remember praying and asking God, “What’s next?”  As I stopped and listened, He spoke and we started becoming who God wanted us to be as a church in our town.

For example, God said…

  • Move your location 9 miles across town to another school, when you do not have the money to do so- we did, and we started growing and God provided!
  • Set a goal to touch 5,000 people with random acts of Kindness in six months, when we had no dollars for this outreach- we did, and people’s lives were changed forever and God provided!
  • Move again to another location that you cannot afford- we did, and God provided and since that time over 260 people have given their lives to Jesus in our services!

My point is this:  There is nothing wrong with coaching, mentors, and blogs, but please LISTEN TO GOD FIRST, and God will use the other voices to implement the vision that He gives you.

5 Launching Lessons From Johnny Appleseed by Steve Sjogren

John Chapman, aka the legendary “Johnny Appleseed” was a missionary who reached out to native Americans in the Ohio Valley in the early 1800s.

He Had Simple Tools

His primary planting tool was a stick! Do you have a stick? When his current stick wore out he found a new stick. I heard recently through the grapevine that sticks are still easy to find!

The more elaborate we make our plans the more likely it is that we will fail.

He Heard the Invitation

He picked up on the invitation of the Father to accomplish his lifelong mission, therefore when the going got tough he was able to return to the beginning of it all to when God unmistakably spoke to him to go out in the first place.

He Didn’t Talk About Outreach, He Did Outreach

Johnny understood it’s about activism, not mere talk, nor continual preparation study, nor the accruing of more cool conference notebooks. He was all about taking risks and getting out there. If he were alive in 2012 his motto would be, “Missional schmissional! Stop the incessant talk, stop being a chicken and just do it for Pete’s sake!”

He Did Small Things

It doesn’t take much to change the world. A tiny apple seed grows into the largest fruit bearing tree in the plant world that will bear thousands of apples.

He Was Faithful

He was all in! He burned his bridges. There was no return.

He Saw Potential in the Faith Realm

Some would find it difficult, if not impossible, to do the ministry of Johnny because it was long-term and not immediately fulfilling. He was called by God to do something great but something that not would fully bear fruit in his lifetime.

Each seed was destined to produce an amazing tree that would produce thousands of apples to the glory of God. It takes the kind of faith only God can provide to live from that perspective. We can’t work that up. “God empower us the ability to hear your calling, regardless of the timing.”

With servant evangelism ministry the fruit takes a while to come about, but guaranteed, but when a church plant remains faithful to strongly serve and show generosity to their surrounding community, astounding results will come about.

Anyone can count the number of seeds in an apple, 
But only God can count the number of apples in a seed.

Robert H. Schuller