Words and Music by Paul Mabury, Lauren Daigle & Jason Ingram
In my new book, Vital Grace: Getting Everything for Nothing, I wanted my readers to allow the amazing truth of God’s relentless and counter-conditional love freely given to fill them so they can live as a son or daughter deeply aware and convinced that they have the highest approval (more than they can give themselves or receive from someone else) in this life; that they can freely enjoy all the security they desperately currently work for in life; and rest in the comfort only the risen Christ can provide. Basically, back to the garden of Eden!
These are the same deep realities we have in mind as we Gospel Coach leaders around the globe. And it is uniquely applied to church planters and pastors, who are navigating a post-church USA. With that as their starting point, they can move out into their city or community as men and women who can love their neighbor, not needing or using their neighbor for their church’s gain.
How? How can we love our city? “By doing good deeds of mercy” you might say.
Well, that is one way to be sure. But I encourage the men I am coaching to spend real time, earnest time, hours and hours, meeting with business and local government leaders (even the House Representative of their district) and ask them:
“What is the backstory of our city/community?”
“Where is this city/community broken?”
“What are the systemic reasons it is broken?”
And finally, “If a church were an active partner to people in this community, what would be some of the things it would be doing to help it become the best community?”
You see, most churches tend to start with the attractional model—“come to our church so we can help you”—with the unintended message that the city is there to help us grow our church. We don't mean to, but it says in effect that the city/community is here for us to plant or grow our church.
Instead of the attraction model (everything being about you), if you start with an attitude of loving your neighbors, I promise the leaders will notice a difference. The power of a Gospel Coaching conversation can be what is vital to changing a community. Part of the conversation is to remind the planter/pastor/leader that they cannot earn what Christ has freely given them, namely His love and grace. Because that’s true, they can then love their neighbor freely.
Remember, you don’t need to tackle the obstacles in your community alone. At CMM, we believe every pastor, church planter, ministry leader, and missionary is created to thrive in ministry. We suggest getting a Gospel Coach to help walk with you through the challenges you’ve never faced before. Our coaches are experienced and certified to equip leaders for sustainable gospel ministry.