Do you like a challenge? This will not be something every pastor or layperson reading this article will accept and that is okay.
I am looking for both clergy and laity who will move out of their comfort zones in the next two months and try something. It may not be new for some of you. Our mission is to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world. That is a fantastic, challenging mission and one I fully embrace. Yet, the mission can feel so huge and impossible to accomplish that some individuals do not see themselves striving to attain that mission. I want to challenge you to take some small, achievable steps to move toward accomplishing this goal.
The first step will be for you to identify one person in your community who is presently unrelated to a congregation. This person may be a nominal Christian, irreligious, or may have never known Jesus Christ. I want you to send me both your name and the name of the person you have identified before the 15th of January. I really hope you will begin before January 1, but I know some of you are extremely busy and need more time. The second step will be to begin praying for this person every day and look for opportunities to share with them what a difference Jesus is making in your life this week. In this step, do not try to convert this person, change them, or make them disciples. My urging is for you to take a few moments every day to pray for this person and communicate with them, at every opportunity, what a difference Jesus is making in your life this week.
If you will send me your name and the name of the person you are praying for, I will pray for both of you each day. This will be a wonderful addition to my daily devotional practices. You may email me at .
The third step will be for you to inform me how you are doing by January 31. I want to hear your stories. I will then ask you to take some additional steps as we move through the early months of 2012.
In the meantime, I hope and pray this season of Advent is filled with joy, peace, love, and hope. May God bless and watch over you.