New Apostolic Church USA

Two rooms to grow

Part 4 of 4

"Growth" from the Summer 2014 VISION Newsletter

Growing big and growing small:

Our congregations, in all their diversity of spiritual life, must "grow big" and "grow small" at the same time. Is this a contradiction? Read the accounts of the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew chapters 5-7 and compare it to the Last Supper as described in John chapters 13-17.

Try and imagine the “bigness” of the Sermon on the Mount. Picture the power of the revolutionary and life changing concepts that Christ communicated in just the Beatitudes alone!

He introduces the Kingdom of God to the masses of everyday people and pronounces God’s desire that they enter and abide there with Him despite their flawed humanity. What a message! I’m sure the number of disciples grew from the power of this preaching!

Then feel the intimacy, the heart to heart conversation, the teaching, the praying, the profession, and the pastoral love of Jesus with His disciples as they communed together within the Last Supper on Maundy Thursday. Can you imagine the growth of the “inner man” that took place within this encounter?

We grow “big” on Sunday within the divine service. Here we experience the fullness of the church in word and sacrament and the richness and authenticity of the apostle ministry. The community of Christ’s church is amplified by the prayers, worship, and music of the assembled congregation. The “bigness” of the Sunday experience is necessary for our growth.

But we also grow small. On the midweek, we experience the intimacy of our small groups. Every small group should offer our members all 4 of these incredibly important inner growth opportunities:

  • Teach discipleship. It’s more than Bible knowledge. It’s how to bring the Gospel into our lives and be transformed by it.
  • Create fellowship and the feeling of belonging to the family of God.
  • Provide pastoral care - minister one to another.
  • Profess the power of His grace within our lives.

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