Two powerful words, “so that”!

Posted: October 7, 2014 by efenster in Ideas
Tags: , , ,

What does a church making peanut brittle have to do with making disciples and transforming the world?  Maybe absolutely nothing  but maybe there is a connection.  The key is that every activity your church does–from its annual rummage sale to its vacation Bible school–must be able to complete the “so that” test.

Lovett Weems and Tom Berlin, in their book entitled Bearing Fruit, says that everything a church does must be linked to its mission by the words so that.  A church must be able to answer the question, “How does this activity help us to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world?”

In the case of peanut brittle, a church could say, “We are making the peanut brittle so that we can rub shoulders with newcomers to our church, so that they can develop friends and get connected with a small spiritual growth group with those friends, so that ultimately these newcomers will grow in their relationship with Christ.”

If you can’t come up with an answer to “so that,” then stop doing it!

Below is a group from Chesterton United Methodist Church that applied the “so that” test to their Companions in Christ group.  The group isn’t new but its members hadn’t, until now, articulated how their group helps carry out the mission.

So, how might your church use the “so that” test too?

— Ed Fenstermacher, Associate Director of Church Development

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