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Fruitfulness for the rest of us



Opinion

1 minute read

Many of our churches have a habit of investing too much in the next big, growth-delivering, soul-saving, church-renewing spiritual product, often backed by a handbook and set of films from some wealthy church somewhere a long way from where God has placed us.

This is all good, but in my experience doesn't quite work as well as advertised. Most church-renewing spiritual products, it seems sometimes, haven't met my church.

When Jesus first taught the Sermon on the Mount to his disciples, it must have been a shock. It's still a shock today. What he majored on was not technique, was not slick and didn't need a workbook.

“Blessed are the poor in spirit ... those who mourn ... the meek ... those who hunger and thirst for righteousness ... the merciful ... the pure in heart ... the peacemakers ... the persecuted.” (Matt 5:3-12)

The Beatitudes are all these things:

slow

grounded in a deep need for God

long term

affecting all of life

undergirding and rising above any specific plans

concerned with our hearts, not our skillset

encompassing sadness and setback

starting small

costing nothing

using the materials to hand, and

successfully helping us and our works to be a sign, instrument, and foretaste of the total transformation of the world in Jesus.

Fruitfulness, in other words, for the rest of us.

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