LeaderLines – from Hillcrest Baptist Church, Austin, Texas  Contact Tom Goodman, Pastor
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Hillcrest Church Office
July 10, 2003

LeaderLines is a weekly “e-briefing” providing valuable information and inspiration to those who serve at Hillcrest Baptist Church.

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Here is this week’s LeaderLines. . . .

Are You Contagious
by Tom Goodman

I like the way Mark Mittleberg describes how most church members see evangelism.  In his book, Building a Contagious Church, he says...

With great exuberance they will say to you, “Evangelism?  Oh, that’s the pastor’s job.  The pastor is the one with the training and tools and whatever else it takes.”  They view it like one of those “extreme” sports programs where a skier stands on top of a huge mountain, smiles defiantly at the camera, and then pushes himself off the edge of what looks like a mile-high wall of sheer ice.  But just before he launches into this death-defying feat, a warning flashes on the screen:  THESE ARE PROFESSIONALS WITH SPECIAL EQUIPMENT AND TRAINING. DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME!

We leaders need to change that view of outreach.  As a leader, showing people how to invite their world to Christ is part of helping people ascend the H.I.L.L.  You were introduced to this acrostic in LeaderLines two weeks ago.  At Hillcrest, everything we do is aimed at helping people reach four objectives:

H – Honor the Lord of Life
I – Invite Your World to Life
L – Love the Fellowship for Life
L – Live the Word in Life

That’s our H.I.L.L. to crest!  Hillcrest is more than our name – it’s a destination!

Last week I highlighted the job we leaders have in helping people “Honor the Lord of Life.”  This week, let’s reflect on how we help people “Invite Their World to Life.”  As leaders, we need to work hard to create a contagious church.

Notice how the phrase is worded:  “Invite YOUR WORLD to Life.”  My job is not to reach that anonymous horde known as “the lost” or “the community.”  No, my job is to make a difference in my own circles of influence.  “Your World” includes the other parents on the soccer sidelines or in the Band Boosters.  “Your World” includes the neighbor you wave at every morning when you step out to get the paper.  “Your World” includes the lady who walks the club treadmill next to you during your morning workouts.

In 1 Chronicles 13:2 we are told, “Let us INVITE them to come and join us.”  That’s our job as believers. And as Hillcrest leaders, we need to look for ways to motivate, train, and mobilize our church to follow that command.  We need to invite people to invite people.

One powerful way to help Hillcrest become more “contagious” is to support the F.A.I.T.H. evangelism training ministry.  Charles Draper is enlisting people to go to the national F.A.I.T.H. workshop in a few weeks, and soon after he will begin another great semester of evangelism training.  Are you signed up?

Thank you for the part you play at helping people “Invite Their World to Life.”  It’s one way we help people crest the H.I.L.L.  Take a moment to examine how you’re doing at helping people become contagious Christians and then re-commit yourself to pouring your passion and energy into that great work!


P.S.  Our Youth Minister Search Committee was formed in the last business meeting, and we are set to meet a few days after you receive this e-briefing.  One of our first projects will be to survey the church to get an idea of what YOU think we should look for in a youth minister.  Be watching for that survey soon!  And pray for us as we begin this important search!