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Looking For a Chance to Try to Do What Jesus Did

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What do you think, in such a complicated world, is it possible to give young people the chance to do what Jesus did? Maybe not in your experience, but I’ve found that yes, Jesus’s simple process can and does work. When I partnered with Alpha Ministries in Italy a couple of years ago, I …
By sethbarnes

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What do you think, in such a complicated world, is it possible to give young people the chance to do what Jesus did?

Maybe not in your experience, but I’ve found that yes, Jesus’s simple process can and does work.

When I partnered with Alpha Ministries in Italy a couple of years ago, I saw that young people who wouldn’t normally go to church loved what we were doing. We didn’t ask local people to go inside the church, rather we filled the square outside with soapsuds and music and sparked hundreds of conversations around, “what kind of church is this?”

What did he do?

For years I’ve tried to find and partner with pastors or church leaders interested in trying to develop their young leaders by following Jesus’s methods. I figure if he told us “follow my commands” that we should try. Sometimes I’ve been successful, but often I find that churches struggle to do what Jesus did.

What did Jesus do? Well, he began by teaching his disciples about the kingdom (Matt 5-7). And then he modeled what that looks like (Matt 8-9). Then he gave his disciples the opportunity to do it on a journey of their own (Matt 10).

Many churches do a great job of preaching the gospel. But then, where is the modeling and as one young person put it, “when do we get a chance to try and do the stuff?” What if Jesus’s methods were not outdated, but just feel difficult in light of modern realities?

Yes, it’s hard for our churches these days. We build our church calendars around Sunday and we build our Sundays around the sermon. Then we go home. And young people see the gap between Jesus’s model – filled with risks and miracles – and what they see in churches and they are saying “no thanks.”

Why not try it?

So, we need to tweak the model. Here’s my recommendation: If you’re a church leader interested in giving more to your young people, I recommend you partner with those who have had some success. If you’d like some help, I’d be happy to come alongside you.

I invite you to join me as I return to Italy this summer with a small group who want to see if it’s still possible to do what Jesus did. Join me for a week or a month. Bring a young disciple and give them a chance to try it.

Interested? It’s not for everyone, but for some it will be the experience of a lifetime. Find out more here and if you’re interested in finding out more, please contact me.

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