The Externally Focused Life

We begin a Spring discipleship series at FBC Meridian this Sunday night. It is based on Rick Rusaw and Eric Swanson's books the The Externally Focused Life and Externally Focused Church. I highly recommend both of these. Come for a cup of church house coffee and some important conversation. 6:00. Here is an outline for the first session -

The Externally Focused Life

L – Love
I – Intersections
F – Fortune
E – Eternity


Love Stories

Ephesians 2:8-9 (Holman Christian Standard Bible)
8 For by grace you are saved through faith, and this is not from yourselves; it is God's gift— 9 not from works, so that no one can boast.
How can we tell others the good news? We (Rusaw and Swanson) suggest you think in terms of stories.
1. Listen to the other person’s story.
2. Ask permission to tell your story.
3. Ask permission to tell God’s story.

Spend some time outlining your story of faith –

Love and Service
Ephesians 2:10 (Holman Christian Standard Bible)
10 For we are His creation—created (A) in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared ahead of time (B) so that we should walk in them.

God saves us from and God saves us for. We need to be “two-testimony” Christians.
Think about this – Do you have a second testimony? What is it? –

Love, Service, and the Church
Ephesians 4:11-13 (Holman Christian Standard Bible)
11 And He personally gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers, 12 for the training of the saints in the work of ministry, to build up the body of Christ, (A) 13 until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of God's Son, (B) [growing] into a mature man with a stature (C) measured by Christ's fullness.

Every member a missionary

There are 4 Characteristics of an Externally Focused Church:
1. Externally focused churches are convinced that good deeds and good news can’t and shouldn’t be separated.
2. Externally focused churches see themselves as vital to the health and well-being of their communities.
3. Externally focused churches believe that ministering and serving are the normal expressions of Christian living.
4. Externally focused churches are evangelistically effective.

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