Thursday, November 18, 2004

We Are Our Messages...

Soren Kierkegaard, the Danish philosopher, talks about "existence-communication,' by which he meant that our lives - our very existence - is our communication. Your existence as an authentic human being communicates more than what you say or even what you think The only essential sermon one can listen to and appropriate comes not from the pulpit via the minister's words but from one's own existence. Christianity is not a doctrine but an "existence communication." Sontag F (1979)

Frost, M. and Hirsch, A. (2003) The Shape of Things to Come: Innovation and Mission for the 21st Century Church

If believers are to make an impact in todays fractured and disoriented society, they will need to learn survival skills and themselves be transformed by the message they seek to communicate. Discipleship simply means the imitation of Christ. Through the first-century Thessalonian believers the gospel spread as imitators of Christ became examples to others, so that in every place their faith in God became known. ...'A disciple is one who embodies the message he or she proclaims. It was to people who were themselves disciples that Jesus gave the Great Commission to disciple the nations.

Gibbs, E. and Coffey, I (2001) Church Next: Quantum Changes in Christian Ministry. IVP

In imitating us, you imitated the Master. Although great trouble accompanied the Word, you were able to take great joy from the Holy Spirit!-taking the trouble with the joy, the joy with the trouble. Do you know that all over the provinces of both Macedonia and Achaia believers look up to you? The word has gotten around. Your lives are echoing the Master's Word, not only in the provinces but all over the place. The news of your faith in God is out. We don't even have to say anything anymore--you're the message! (1 Thessalonians 1:6-8 - MSG)

Challenging and encouraging...?

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