On Tuesday 26 November 2013, a group of people from Thurrock attended a day of seminars by Steve Addison, author of What Jesus Started and Movements That Change The World, at All Saints Church in Woodford Wells.
Andy Blakey (TCF Seabrooke-All Saints MSC Grays), Rob Groves (Community Evangelist, Stanford-le-Hope), Russell Godward (Thurrock Christian Fellowship), Tim Harrold (Transformation Thurrock) and John Peters (TCF Tilbury Pride) joined Simon Mason of Benfleet and around a hundred others from across the New Wine network to hear and practice the radical ideas of Australian Steve Addison.
Steve bases his training on DISCIPLE-MAKING MOVEMENTS around the passage in Luke 10:1-12 (see below) when he sends out the 72 disciples to do what he did (it’s all in the passage).
Steve’s seminars were structured around a diamond-shaped diagram (see right) which was quartered with a central circle:
- SEE (central circle) Jesus did what he saw the Father doing, so his disciples must see what God sees, understand the signs of the times as well as what’s going on around us and who’s around us
- CONNECT (upper quarter) Jesus made connections with people, so his disciples must do too, asking God to reveal the persons of peace, i.e., those in whom he is working in already and who have circles of influence
- SHARE (righthand quarter) Jesus talked about himself to his connections, so his disciples must sow the seed that is Jesus, using your own story of how you came to faith, and ‘Discovery Bible Studies’, spoken stories that can lead to informal questions and discussion – always asking,
- what does it mean?
- what do you think you should do?
- who are you going to tell about it?
- TRAIN (lower quarter) making disciples through obedience-based teaching, looking at the commands of Jesus, such as, “repent and believe”, “be baptised”, and “love one another”: Steve said, “kKnowledge itself does not lead to obedience – you won’t understand unless you obey.”
- GATHER (leftahand quarter) building a simple church community that prays, worships, breaks bread, discusses the scriptures, and makes more disciple (Acts 2:42-47 contains the necessary charcteristics of God’s people – see below)
The whole process repeats itself and each time multiplies disciples.
Disciples are trained to make further disciples, remembering that Jesus modelled his practices; assisted the disciples in those practices; watched the disciples practice on their own; and then left the disciples to get on with making new disciples, going through exactly the same pattern themselves.
This is how the apostle Paul was able to ‘grow’ a network of disciples four generations deep, a living movement of people (see the diagram below). Note that this is not a hierarchy.
The seminars included a lot of group work. Delegates had to work with people they’d never met before, sharing stories from the Bible in their own words, and their own coming-to-faith stories. The final task was to get into local groups and discuss where we’re at, and the way forward, based upon what we’d heard. The results of the Thurrock groups diliberations can be seen below.
Watch Steve’s “Following and Fishing” four-part teaching series here: http://www.movements.net/
Questions for Thurrock…
- What did Jesus do? What is Jesus doing?
- What did Jesus teach? What is Jesus teaching us?
- Am I a disciple?
- Am I making disciples?
- What and/or who is God showing me?
- Can I see it? Can I see them?
- Who am I connecting with?
- Are any of them people of peace (people God is already working on)?
- Have I got a story to share?
- What is the story most appropriate for that person?
What are we to do?
- Train and equip converts to be converted into disciples who disciple
- Transform the church into being transformative from the inside
- Move from attractional addition (come in) to missional multiplication (go out)
Luke 10:1-12 NIV
Jesus sends out the seventy-two
After this the Lord appointed seventy-two others and sent them two by two ahead of him to every town and place where he was about to go. He told them, ‘The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field. Go! I am sending you out like lambs among wolves. Do not take a purse or bag or sandals; and do not greet anyone on the road.
‘When you enter a house, first say, “Peace to this house.” If someone who promotes peace is there, your peace will rest on them; if not, it will return to you. Stay there, eating and drinking whatever they give you, for the worker deserves his wages. Do not move around from house to house.
‘When you enter a town and are welcomed, eat what is offered to you. Heal those there who are ill and tell them, “The kingdom of God has come near to you.” But when you enter a town and are not welcomed, go into its streets and say, “Even the dust of your town we wipe from our feet as a warning to you. Yet be sure of this: the kingdom of God has come near.” I tell you, it will be more bearable on that day for Sodom than for that town.
Acts 2:42-47 NIV
The fellowship of the believers
They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. All the believers were together and had everything in common. They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favour of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.
Books by Steve Addison
What Jesus Started
For reviews of this book, go to http://www.amazon.co.uk/What-Jesus-Started-Steve-Addison/dp/0830836594/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1386259964&sr=8-1&keywords=What+Jesus+Started
Movements That Change The World
For more info about this book, go to http://www.amazon.co.uk/Movements-Change-World-Steve-Addison/dp/0830836195/ref=pd_sim_b_1