Sunday, May 22, 2016

When someone asks me, "What do you do?"

A Note from Bill Allison...
People sometimes ask me, "What do you do?" When I tell them, "I'm a disciplemaking missionary with Cadre Ministries," I often get blank stares. They have no mental box to put me in. What in the world does a disciplemaking missionary do? Great news!  This story below is at the very center of what we mean when we say, "We're disciplemaking missionaries." It's WHO we are... and WHAT we do. And we couldn't do it without friends like you. So please keep reading.

From fall of 2015 to spring of 2016, I led a Disciplemaking Learning Community in WI. Recently, Pastor Andrew Smiley (the guy on the right in the picture above) sent me the email I am sharing with you in the post below—with his permission. THANK YOU for reading this and tracking with the Allisons, Cadre Ministries, and our disciplemaking adventures! To God—and God alone—be the glory!
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Bill,
I have changed over the past eight months and my involvement in the Wisconsin Disciplemaking Learning Community (DLC) has been a big part of what God is doing in my life.  

Our DLC has continually challenged my propensity to put my life in categories rather than think of my life as one complete whole. It is my tendency to go from "box to box" (family, ministry, etc...) making sure I am faithful in each while failing to connect the dots. I have been frustrated at the tension this type of thinking has brought me as I makes it hard to be "successful" with all things all the time. 

Our DLC has shifted my thinking. I now think about my life as one comprehensive effort to follow Jesus in all things. All of these things are related and especially related to Jesus. I obviously knew that my life was about following Jesus, but learning to follow Jesus in all things in my life has profoundly shift my perspective. 

It is not harmful to my ministry to focus on serving and loving my family. It is not harmful for my family when I fulfill and live out my calling to pastor and make disciples. Making the most of my time (with my family, ministry, in community) has led me to push conversations, activity and focus toward answering this question: 

What does it look like to follow Jesus together today? 

I look forward to continually answering this question alongside others.

A pursuit of following Jesus in my life has only spilled over into the way I lead in ministry, the way I preach, and the way I think and live. I am more open to aligning ministry to meet what I find in the Bible, especially in how Jesus made disciples. The measure of success has less to do with many typical external measures (attendance...) but more about whether the disciple is multiplying and overflowing into others. In my ministry, I am constantly asking this question: 

What does it look like to help other people follow Jesus and make disciples like He did?

Your disciplemaking friend,

Andrew Smiley
Twin Lakes, WI

If you'd like to get your own taste of what Andrew is talking about, go here, here, and here. For more information about Disciplemaking Learning Communities, contact us.

(Above: The WI DLC)


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