I never liked it when my former boss would respond to my asking if I should be working on this OR that by saying, “It’s the Genius of the ‘AND.’” However, his vantage point was higher than mine. He knew for me to grow and for us to achieve our vision and mission, attention was needed to both/and, not either/or.
I think the same can be said about our Vision of Greater here at Mt. Bethel. If we are to become a community that is compelled to love like Jesus so that our lives, our city, and our world are transformed for the glory of God, we must be committed to Gathering, Growing, AND Going. Discipleship happens in each of these areas, and transformation truly takes place when we are engaged in all three.
That is what we see unfolding in the early Christian Church found in Acts 2:42-47. We find this community committed to Gathering for worship and fellowship regularly. They also were Growing in their faith by studying the apostles teaching (what we now have in our Bibles). In addition to Gathering and Growing, they were committed to Going in witness, meeting the needs of others. The result of this Gathering, Growing, AND Going was transformation was taking place not only within their group, but within the greater community as we find that the “Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved” (Acts 2:47).
We want to challenge each of you as leaders to reflect on whether your discipleship group, whether a Sunday School Class, a Short-Term Study, or a Life Group is engaged in a well-rounded balance of Gathering, Growing, and Going. If not, what would it look like to move your group toward a more holistic discipleship process in which the Holy Spirit might be able to bring greater transformation within your group and within East Cobb through your witness and open invitation to others? May we be committed to the genius of the AND – Gathering, Growing, AND Going in discipleship.