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City Changers: Lesson 4


Thinking Kingdom Community

Our cities have become highly stratified, complex networks of relationships.  As a result our cities are not likely to be changed by any single congregation.  Instead they will be changed as God’s people band together around a common mission.  God is calling us to adopt a church-in-a-city mentality.

Three types of church leaders:

  1. Isolated Church Leaders – most of their time and focus is spent on keeping their church doors open. They struggle in ministry much of the time. They live never expecting to see great things.  They think about what happened in last week’s services and ask, “How do I get things done in my church?”
  2. Tribal Church Leaders – focus on larger issues than small church leaders but still most of their concerns revolve around their local church. They ask, “How can our church do great things for God.”
  3. Kingdom Leaders – their mental picture includes not only their local church but other similar churches as well. They ask, “How can the church and the people of God transform this community.

Tribal Leaders think of:                         Kingdom leaders think of:

Place                                                                          Area

Events                                                                       Opportunities

Traditions                                                                 Strategies

Internal focus                                                          Outward focus

Current Changes in Church Culture

The decline in the church’s influence in the community. 

The decreasing attraction of denominationalism.

The decreasing influence of ecumenism.

The rise of strong para-church movements.

The importance of Christian media corporations.

The growth of the Spirit-filled community.

The increasing popularity of independent evangelical churches.

The loneliness of the majority of pastors.

Understanding the City-Church Movement

These movements grow from preexisting relational networks of pastoral leaders.

The leaders are long-tenured pastors that people trust.

The networks share a common base of prayer and vision.

The leaders and churches make covenants with each other.

The local church and resources are seen as a gift from God to be shared with the community.

These churches focus on transforming their communities through fulfilling The Great Commission.

The area they impact is small enough for them to develop strong relationships and large enough for them to have great influence.

The leaders and churches have a healthy balance between inward and outward focus.  They avoid the breakdown which occurs when we have a strong emphasis on prayer but fail to move with corresponding actions.

What can we do to develop Kingdom thinking?

Pray – ask God to touch our hearts for our communities.

Connect – find others who share the same vision.

Learn – get good information concerning this subject.

Dream – ask God for the vision, then cast the vision and seek discernment on how to fulfill it.

Act – make a start and trust God to carry us forward.

Changing Our Thinking to Kingdom-thinking Can be Powerful!

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