There’s been much high-level thinking and international cooperation around what it will take to complete the great commission globally.
But what about where we live?
Some would say that our villages, towns and cities are already reached, but we all know that in our increasingly secular, multi-faith and no-faith society there are countless thousands in every place who have no knowledge of the Good News about Jesus and his kingdom. So what will it take?
Over the last 20+ years I’ve been working in the Liverpool city region, both planting and then handing on Frontline church, but also working with other churches asking this same question – what will it take to complete the great commission here?
We have seen significant transformation through prayer, and shared social action initiatives.
Some of the insights and strategies we believe the Lord has given us, and some of the relationships that have been forged over that time, encourage us to believe that we are on to something. We have seen significant transformation through prayer, and shared social action initiatives, but now God is directing us to seriously look at how we ‘reach every man, woman and child in the Liverpool city region with the gospel in the next 10 years’
Local missional networks of leaders across the region are starting to pray and plan together. Training in missional confidence is taking place among churches that want to see their congregations mobilised to be, do and share good news where they live, work and play. We are starting to map missional activity across the region. We are planning for a saturation of missional small groups and congregations that will take prayer and evangelistic responsibility for their neighbourhoods. It feels like we’ve only just begun, but there are encouraging signs.
It feels like we’ve only just begun, but there are encouraging signs.
When I first moved to Liverpool in 1991 David Alton was our local MP in Wavertree. When it came to general election time, his promotional billboards carried the slogan ‘Everyone knows someone who’s been helped by David Alton’. And it was absolutely true; he was such a good constituency MP. My dream for 10 years’ time is that we will be able to say across our city region, that ‘everyone knows someone whose life has been changed by Jesus.’
Such will be the progress of the good news, and such will be the penetration of missional small groups and congregations that everyone will also be in easy reach of a local group of Christians who are known to their neighbours, who are blessing and serving their neighbourhood, and who are making invitations to those who are open to a spiritual journey towards Christ.
What if we started to share our resources to make it happen?
Other towns are asking about doing the same thing in their places. What if every town and city had a network of leaders and churches who were committed to such a venture? What if we started to share our resources to make it happen? What if we got our selves out of management and maintenance mode in to mission and multiplication mind-sets? What if God showed up in answers to prayer, lives got changed, and over time, everyone knew someone whose life had been changed by Jesus? Just imagine!
My reading of Matthew 24 :14, 34 is that: ‘this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world for a witness to all nations and then the end will come’ and that there will be a generation where ‘all these things take place’.
Why not our generation?
Why not now?
Let’s be the generation that prepares the ground for Jesus’ return.
If you would like to start a conversation about this happening in your town or city, please do contact [email protected]