Watch Full Program! Listen! Simon Sinek, who rose tofame by challenging us to find out our “Why” in our lives, businesses, corporations, and ministries flips it all on its head, in a good way, when he is asked how the COVID-19 lockdowns, and the working from home and the smaller gatherings taking place is having an impact on the church. He calls this an opportunity saying “the purpose of the church is to SPREAD THE GOSPEL!“
The world that we are presently in is a night and day difference compared to where things were two years ago. Many throughout the world were taken by surprise when they found themselves on lockdown, having to live life now solely from their homes. Where many were “going to work” now they are “zooming” into work. One pastor Carey Nieuwhof, recently sat down with Simon Sinek to talk about the changing culture of today and how the Church can respond.
BREAKING THE MOLD
Sinek begins to share about the traditional model of medicine in society. So, look at a medical office. Right? Older generation, you have “your doctor.” That’s my doctor. My doctor is the best doctor. I go to “my doctor.” No matter what it is, if it’s the common cold or something severe, I go to “my doctor.” Right, and I go to this horrible waiting room. Very few people feel recognized or valued in that business model or operational structure of how doctors interact with their patients in that current design. But then, this generation has begun to approach how they view a doctor differently.
Sinek continues, “And then there’s a young generation that says, “I don’t care. For basic medicine? If somebody’s got the right degree, then they probably know how to give me an annual medical check or treat my cold. Right? I don’t need a specialist.” What would that even look like?
Sinek points to a new breakthrough company called ‘OneMedical.’ And so, you have an organization like OneMedical that shows up, where you walk in, and it feels like you’re at Pottery Barn. And it’s beautiful and the doctor doesn’t wear a lab coat; she comes up and says, “Hi. I’m Stacey.” Instead of you know, “I’m doctor whatever.” Right? And the customer service is incredible. And you can call, and you can talk to the doctor, or talk to them virtually, and they reply to your emails within 24 hours. It’s amazing! It’s amazing! Right!?” Simon says.
THINK OUTSIDE “THE BOX”, OR SHOULD WE SAY, THINK OUTSIDE “THE BUILDING”
What we’re now finding out is that how things were always done is not necessarily how things need to be carried out moving forward. This is where Sinek then begins to connect this same application as to how the Church can change their model of thinking in today’s culture. He goes on to say, “And so, I think the Church can learn from that. Which is, the opportunity to spread the Gospel. Nobody said that it has to be done one way. Nobody said it has to be done in one location, at one time, at one, you know, that suits you. And the people who like to schedule their entire day about going to this one location at this one time. Who said? Where is that written that it has to be done that way?”
IT WASN’T ALWAYS LIKE THIS
Carey Nieuwhof responds, “Well in the early Church, it wasn’t. It’s just been that way for a few centuries.” Sinek continues, “There you go. You see, we got used to it, and now we think it’s the way it’s always been. We must begin to think differently. Yes, there may be people that don’t want change and like things the way they are. That is fine for them. What about those who don’t want the old manner of thinking? How can we change the present model of thinking to adapt to our changing world? Sinek begins to share some profound insights of possibilities. “What if people want to worship on their own time frame, in their own location, or in a remote location? Or I want to move from one city to another city, but I want to keep going to the same Church, the same people, with the same community, how come you don’t allow me to do that? And the Church’s opportunity is they’ve forgotten, the responsibility of a Church is not to get people in the pews. THE RESPONSIBILITY OF THE CHURCH IS TO SPREAD THE GOSPEL. So, take advantage of changing cultures, and changing politics, and changing technologies, and find new ways. That’s existential flex.”
How powerful is that? The purpose of the Church is to spread the Gospel! This unfamiliar environment may have snuck up on the nations of the world, but they definitely didn’t sneak up on God. This is a divine opportunity. This causes us to remember the final words that Jesus made known to His disciples before He ascended back to Heaven when He spoke in Matthew 28:19-20, “THEREFORE GO! and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
MEET MY BUILDING
How can we invite someone to “come” to Church if Believers“are” the Church? We cannot go to what we already are. Yet, it’s the fact that you are the church and the Christ in you draws you to Christ in them. It may look the same to others, but when it’s Christ drawing us together, He is the center of all things and Who we have in common. Many believers, when they want to lead someone to Christ, think about first inviting someone to a building they call “the Church” versus inviting someone themselves to know Jesus. Though they profess to know Christ, they lead the person to a building, never understanding that they are the “Building of God”, that they are the “Temple of God” and God’s Spirit dwells inside of them. They don’t know that they can lead that person, themselves, to Christ. Yet, when they invite them to the building, they expect the building to lead that person to Christ. They lay the burden on one pastor as fifty, a hundred, or one thousand of them look on and see if their pastor will do their job. We are all called to be witnesses for our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and the present mold we’ve adapted has lifted that reality from many in the church. When modeling family, gathering as the family of God, everyone knows it’s all our jobs to let everyone know of the Good News of Jesus Christ no matter where or how they meet or what we meet in or meet at. Not only do we know it, we all help each other in leading people to Christ and celebrate together when someone else is born again into the family of God.
Many people look at the present model of the Church and wonder why things are the way they are. Maybe you remember the game that many of us may have played together as school children, “telephone.” Gather a few children together and give a message to the first one. Instead of telling every child in the room, tell the first one to your right. Then that child whispers the message to the next child on their right so that the other children cannot hear, and the message is whispered to the next, one by one, until the last child gets the message. Everyone would be giggling with anticipation wondering what the last child heard. Laughter would erupt as the last child shared what they heard, and it was nothing like the first child shared. It is a funny game involving a dozen school children.
Now imagine one specific message that Jesus gave to His disciples 2,000 years ago! Haven’t we done the same thing? Instead of laughing and asking “what was the original word” as children do, we just continue on, besides we’ve got to pay this mortgage payment on this building, right? We can fix this by going back to God’s Word, scripture, instead of depending on what someone told someone, who told someone, who told someone over the past one hundred years. Jesus calls it, “returning to your First Love.”
FREE AT LAST
What God is about to do is so much larger than any building can handle, including mega buildings. For us to be a part of what He is going to do in these last days and with this last days harvest we have to understand that we, as believers, are the building of God. We are called to GO tell others, everyone, everywhere and Jesus will go with us as we do. We must begin to learn how to BE the Church outside of a building in our everyday life. “Free at last, free at last, thank God O’ Mighty, free at last.” Jesus came to set you free to follow Him and to spread the Gospel to those who have not yet heard of Him. This will take place in your neighborhoods, your homes, your workplace, your community, schools, states, nation, and world. What all these have in common, they are not in one building.
If this is new to you and you have not invited Jesus into your life, YOU CAN! You may have heard about Jesus, but you never knew that Jesus wants you to be a part of His family. You can read more stories about inviting Jesus into our lives and do the same at MeetMyFather.org! What a powerful moment!