You’ve been hearing a lot about this resource. We’d like to give you a sneak peek into what you will soon find available as a download.
Proximity is a six-session small group curriculum for anyone looking to:
• Reach their world for Christ
• Increase their understanding of what it means to follow Jesus
• Deepen their relationship with God and others
• Live out the great commandment to love God and to love people
Each session begins with an image chosen to enhance your understanding of the topic being discussed and to draw you into deeper consideration and reflection. You will have the opportunity to dig into Scripture and explore thought-provoking questions designed for group and personal use. Finally, you will have the opportunity to respond as the Holy Spirit reveals how you can reposition yourself in proximity to God and others.
For the introduction, click continue reading
The word evangelism is having an identity crisis in our culture. While it stems from the root word evangel, which means good news, evangelism has become associated with not-so-good news for too many people. Sometimes Christians feel guilt or annoyance or pressure or confusion when they hear it—anything but good news about the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Yet we are called to take up the good news of the gospel as if it were a pair of shoes that we wear wherever we go. Jesus came to declare the good news, and on the cross he became the good news. Yet the world struggles to receive it and Christians struggle to spread it.
Where do we go from here? Have you ever felt like you have the tools you need to share your faith, but you rarely pick them up? Are you a Christian leader who feels at a loss whenever you teach on the subject of evangelism? Are you a follower of Jesus who longs to take a fresh look at how to engage the world in a way that brings life?
Proximity can help. This small group resource invites participants to draw closer to God and to one another. More than a list of tools or a cheat sheet for evangelism, Proximity is a guide that helps us reposition our focus from three distinct perspectives: posture, perseverance, and presence.
As a small boy, I used to love to visit the family farm in northeast Kansas where my dad grew up. Although it was once a fully functioning farm, by the time I used to visit the property it had fallen into disrepair. I spent hours exploring all of the equipment once used to work the ground and tend the animals.
I never met my grandfather, but I heard stories about a man who loved the land. He farmed with his heart as much as with his head. I was a child of suburbia and had no idea what to do with the tools I discovered in the barn or how to care for the land. But my grandfather worked the land, adopting the posture of a farmer. He demonstrated perseverance as he withstood the trials of nature. And he was fully present in order to respond to the ever-changing needs of the crops and animals.
In the same way, the way we reposition ourselves in relation to God and to people is through a response to God that flows out of our heart and our mind. We adopt a godly posture, demonstrate
perseverance, and engage in active presence as we increase our proximity to God and to others.
Posture. We adopt a mental and spiritual position in response to what God calls us to do, be, and say. Our posture will help us develop a heart that aches for justice and longs to know the remedy for our broken world.
Perseverance. We develop a dogged determination, holding on even when the journey becomes difficult. With perseverance we look closely at the story of God and we engage the skewed way our world perceives Christianity and the ways that we have contributed to that broken understanding of what it means to be a Christ follower.
Presence. We become fully engaged with God and others. Presence helps us to see the world around us through a heavenly lens that increases our awareness of how to join others on their journey.