Having been in this field of church planting for a long time, I have seen and experienced and been a part of that changing landscape. In my experience, I’ve seen the process of reaching people for Christ becoming more and more relational. It’s a grassroots, person-by-person way of discovering what is the good news for this particular person and then asking “How can I best demonstrate and communicate that good news?”
That’s the core of trying to help people experience Jesus. We need to reflect Jesus to them… we need to become incarnational ourselves. And that means focusing at the grassroots level: personally, relationally and intentionally. We need to focus on the micro, not the macro. And we ourselves need to be in the harvest, engaging with those who don’t know Christ.
In the circles where new churches are being successfully planted and are growing, the very ways we understand the word “church” are changing. There is much talk about becoming less attractional (come to us, come to our building) and about becoming more missional (engaging with the world and reaching out to those in it on their own turf.) This boils down to a significant paradigm shift in church culture… and a return to the roots of the early church and a return to the roots of the great commission. If we can seize on this important shift—and learn to reflect Jesus in a person-to-person way—this is an incredible opportunity for the church today.