Sunday, August 4, 2013

One size doesn't fit all!

Have you ever bought a T-shirt where the manufacturer or retailer guaranteed that ‘one size fits all’, only of course to discover that the sleeves were too baggy, or the shirt was too long, or you couldn’t get your head through the neck?

Sometimes we treat Ministry the same way. We practise local Church Ministry as if our community is a mono-culture; i.e. people are all the same, and what works for one, will work for all.

No community is mono-culture; all communities are multi-cultural because every culture is a set of sub-cultures which have their own unique set of language, dress, values and beliefs. A sub-culture may be distinctive because of the age of its members, or by their race, occupation, class or gender. The differences can be quite profound and each group needs the Gospel. Someone has said…. “The key to people understanding your message is your understanding them”.

For our mission to be effective, it needs to be relevant and relevance requires a focus on the individual and an understanding of their world view.

So, the next time we meet someone new, or as we plan some special outreach focus, we need to know who we are talking to, discover their ideas and issues, their burdens and cares, and what is driving them.

Paul reminds us in 1 Corinthians 9:19 (New Living translation)

"Even though I am a free man with no master, I have become a slave to all people, to bring many to Christ."

Yours in Christ

….. Roger Matthews

Bulletin 4th August 2013 here