Above and Beyond: Reach

l The following post is based on our “Above and Beyond" series across C3 Sydney’s 11 Locations l

"‘My food’, replied Jesus, ‘is to do the will of the one who sent me, and to finish His work! Don’t you have a saying, “Another four months, then comes harvest”? Well, let me tell you, raise your eyes and see! The fields are white! It’s harvest time already! The reaper earns his pay, and gathers crops for the life of God’s coming age, so that sower and reaper can celebrate together."   John 4:34-36 (NTE)

The theme for the month of June is Vision Builders. We discuss our vision to reach all people with the good news of Jesus, build the church, care for the community and the role each one of us can play. When we reflect on the things already achieved:  The people meeting Jesus each week in our services, our new locations; the transformed lives; and the people helped across the world, we are excited to be a part of it and compelled to keep going.

The heart of the vision (the why)

God calls on us all to stretch, to grow and to believe in the vision of transformed lives.  It is not about the amount we can contribute but about engaging our hearts to give to the vision.  When we sacrifice to help others, no matter how small, we are aligning our hearts with what our mighty God is doing.  We are walking away from a self-seeking life and reaching out to see others transformed.

Vision Builders is an expression of generosity that stands in contrast to a self centred world.  Life in our cities can be very lonely and people are seeking community, peace and hope.  Jesus says He has living water to give – a never-ending downpour of acceptance, hope, love and peace (John 4:10).  This is what we can offer to people.

The woman at the well (John 4:1-42)

In Jesus’ time, God’s people had put up barriers to separate themselves from others. One of the groups of “others” that they kept away from was the Samaritans. Yet Jesus said that He “had to go through Samaria”, breaking the rule because He had a mission in His heart to reach them with the gospel. Jesus wasn’t going to avoid the people who needed help the most (because they were excluded from Jewish synagogues and the temple), He went to them Himself.  This wasn’t easy:   We read that He went in the middle of the day, under the desert sun.

Jesus was hungry, thirsty and tired but was there on purpose, to meet a woman who had made so many bad choices her own people had rejected her.  She came to the well at noon to avoid all of the other people. Instead of being met by judgement, misunderstanding and rejection, she meets Jesus.  Some people don’t feel they can come to church because they have been pushed away just like this woman.  While we’re not perfect, we want to break down the rules and walls between people just like Jesus did.

Focus in 2019/20

  • Each person sharing Jesus with friends, family and strangers:  We can all build connections and invite people to come along to our services and connect groups.
  • Establishing our church in different locations in Sydney:  We are aiming for 20 Sydney locations in 2025 so that people don’t have to travel a long distance to find community at C3.
  • Broadcasting services and programs:  Being able to encounter C3 wherever they are, leads many people to change their perceptions of church and seek out a C3 location.

When people are reached, they come into our C3 community and just like the Samaritan woman, bring all of their connections and their community with them.  The good news can then flow out to a new group of people (Romans 10:13-15).  We are not designed to live in but to reach out (Mark 16:15).

Something to talk about:

  1. If you weren’t raised in the church, how did you become connected with C3?
  2. Consider the different communities you are a part of, where there is an opportunity to invite people to church?
  3. Take some time to encourage each other with how being involved with Vision Builders has affected you. Maybe organise a connect group table for the Vision Builders Dinner on Friday June 21st.
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