Eric Swanson has a passion for engaging churches worldwide in the needs and dreams of their communities toward the end of spiritual and societal transformation. He served with Campus Crusade for Christ for twenty-five years before joining the staff of Leadership Network, where he worked with scores of missional churches around North America.
To begin seeing communities transformed, he encourages pastors, leaders, and believers to make 10% of their time every week to do city-wide things. It’s as simple as going to something that anyone else is doing and getting involved in different networks.
We need to move our thinking and strategy from a ministry to a city ministry. Remember that spiritual transformation = societal transformation. A city transforming movement can be so simple; anyone can participate. Nobody has to do more than they are able, but the sum total is enormous.
People want their life to matter and do more meaningful things in their lives. They don’t need someone to hold their hand. They want to be equipped and empowered.
If a pastor can equip, train and deploy their people to live on-mission as a lifestyle, it leaves the pastor unburdened from running a campaign. Once lay leaders are mobilized to live on-mission, they run with it and live it out, not needing the pastor’s continual management.
Even introverts have about 40 people in their sphere of influence. If we were all living on-mission, we all probably have someone in our sphere of influence.
When God’s people are living on mission, it makes a tangible difference in society. So here is a great question to help you find where God could be inviting you to partner with Him: “What evil should die and what good should thrive because God’s people are living on mission?”
“As the soul is to the body, so Christians are to the world.” If you take the soul out of a body, it’s just a corpse. So if we are just going to live in our holy huddles and separate ourselves from this evil city, it will make the city evil.
Can you spend a minute every day or two praying for your neighbors? And then look for opportunities for tangible ways to care for them? Then look for the God moment in the conversation?