Matt Carter – Calling of a Church Planter

  Matt-carter2 callings

Primary – to Jesus Christ

Secondary – for Jesus Christ

The gospel will never be effective THROUGH your life until it's effective IN your life.

Carter asks potential staff hires this question. "when was the last time the gospel brought you to tears?"  He said, "If they can't answer that question, I don't hire them. Why? I don't want to go into battle with someone whose heart Jesus has not moved." 

 He asks the question of the church planter, "how certain are you of your calling."  Am I ready to walk away from anything.  Am I willing to count everything as loss even if I never gain it back."

The assurance of the calling will determine whether you endure in this ministry or you quit.

Satan will come after your calling in the following ways:

When discouragement comes – eg ..when you find out one of your members has been bashing you behind your back, when a couple you have counseled a year finally decides to divorce

When doubt comes – eg.about your ability to lead, your ability to preach/teach

When temptation comes – eg..late at night when you and wife have had an argument…in front of a computer screen, when on a flight a woman sitting next to you flirts with you,

When failure comes – eg….your church plant fails and you have to start over,

When sickness comes – eg..cancer

 

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Scott Thomas – Fighting for one another

Scott-thomasScott Thomas – president of Acts29 is up now. (didnt realize he was speaking..hmm)

"I'm tired of fighting with other brothers about menial things, it's time we start fighting for each other."

A Christian who fails to unite with a community of believers is vulnerable to all-out demonic siege.

 

In C.S. Lewis' "The Screwtape Letters" the mentoring demon advised Wormwood to get them (Christians) to focus on indifferent things.

What are we fighting over?

Some of the meanest people I know are people who show up to church on Sunday.

7 common tactics of Satan

1. Doubt (Gen. 3:1)

2. Diversion

3. Deception (John 8:44) (all war is based on deception)

4. Division (John 17)

5. Disruption (I Cor. 1:10-12)

6. Dominance

7. Destruction (Luke 11:17)

4 Characteristics of Gospel friendship (1 Peter 5:1-4)

1. A gospel friend initiates a reproducible example as an image-bearer of Jesus.  "Shepherd the flock…not domineering over those in your charge, but being examples to the flock" (vs 2-3)

2. A gospel friend intiates relationships in spite of his own personal needs. The glory of God motivates this interaction.  "As a fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, as well as a paraker in the glory that is going to be reveasled" (vs1)  – you dont' get rid of your junk first. You serve others while you are struggling.

3. A gospel friend initiates relationships with the people among them.   "Shepherd the flock of God that is among ou, exercising oversight" (vs 2).  "All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned  — every one — to his own way"  (Isa 53:6)

4. A gospel friend initiates caring acts of service for others: "not under compulsion, but willingly, as God would have you."

"you are a wolf leader if you are drawing people to yourself."

 

Bruce Wesley – Church Planter’s Marriage

Wesley His text:

Hebrews 13:4

1. Make your marriage a priority

Loving your wife shapes your character for choices you will make in your ministry.

Bruce said he and his wife  uniterrupted conversation when we come home from work, 2 nights will be at home, Friday are together, 2 retreats a year just as a couple,

 

lover second, leader first.  God did not love you with a kind of love that put you first. His love is first about his own glory first.   God's love is a kind of love that CREATES value in us, not SEEKS value in us.

 

2. See marriage as God's grace to you for spiritual formation

quotes Gary Thomas -"what if God created marriage to make us holy, not happy."

Before sin: characteristics of marriage:

naked ,not ashamed, completely known, unconditionally accepted

After sin:

hiding ,blaming,  

Where the Gospel is alive:

Truth, Grace

Keep your marriage bed undeflied. We have reduced sex to less than it is. Sex in marriage should bring glory to God.  Sex is a worshipful thing and we should do it regularly.

quotes Tripp. "you drag the quality of the relationship into the marriage bed"

I struggle with lust most often when my plans have been thwarted.  Lust lives in the neighborhood of violence not in the neighborhood of nurturing.

The law won't change your heart, but it will show you glory. It will protect you.

Bruce's fence of protection.. no girlfriends, no time alone with a woman, no conversation w a woman your wife warned you about, pray for protection.