When I was in college, there was a perennial phrase my professors said every May: “Don’t waste your summer.” That’s a good word, especially for those like me who seemed to contract summer-itis in February. It was their attempt at imparting a little wisdom to young people who didn’t have much. But I soon learned.
Summer is a unique season with much opportunity. Make it what you will. It goes by very fast, likely with lots of fun and lots of busyness. I’ve arrived too many times in late August having accomplished a nice tan (from the golf course) and not much else! For followers of Jesus, that really ought not to be. My professor’s words are as true today as they were years ago: “Don’t waste your summer.”
That’s the plan. As best we know how as a church, this summer we want to be intentional about discipleship. We want to lean into the mission of our church: making disciples by intentionally equipping people for life on mission.
To do so, we are suspending Sunday evening services June 13 through August 15 (which is your summer break if you are a local student). In the place of evening services, we will launch a 10-week church wide discipleship study called “Starting Point,” written by our good friends at the North American Mission Board (NAMB). It’s specifically geared for anyone ready to grow in their journey with Jesus in making disciples.
Just ask yourself these questions —
- What mark is my life making in accomplishing the Great Commission?
- Why does God have me here doing what I’m doing?
- How can I leverage my gifting for maximal spiritual impact?
- Who in my context needs to hear the gospel—from me?
- Where would God have me take my next step in following him?
This study is about discipleship. It’s about missional living. And it’s for you.
The material is suitable for individual, family or group study—any time during the week. If you’d like to host a home group study this summer, please let us know. We’d be glad to promote and send people your way.
Our hope is that the Lord will:
- Teach us all how to live more faithfully on mission
- Raise up new group leaders passionate for making disciples
- Lead families to disciple their children with intentionality
- Fuel a stronger culture of creative, off-site, disciple-making efforts
Please pray to these ends.
Jesus said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:18-20)
You’ll be able to access the complete NAMB Starting Point material on our web site or pick up your print copy on Sundays in the worship center. Each Sunday, we will post a family discussion guide and application video for the corresponding chapter. Look for your friends on camera!
coatsbaptist.com/startingpoint will be the place to go to access the material, the weekly discussion guide, and application video throughout the summer. The videos will also be accessible to watch on our YouTube channel and Facebook page.