This blog is the fourth in a four-part series about house churches. Check out last week’s blog here.
One word in both the vision and mission statements for East-West communicates a core strategy for the ministry: multiply.
It is not enough for Christians to love and worship Jesus in silos. Believers are called to multiply and disciple new followers of Jesus, encourage those new believers to do the same, and so on.
For the past few weeks, we have been exploring what a house church can look like in the midst of a global pandemic. As we wrap up the house church method known as the three-thirds process, we will see that the last portion shows how the church can live out multiplying disciples of Christ.
Three-thirds: Step three of three
“You see that a person is considered righteous by what they do and not by faith alone.” -James 2:24
As James 2:26 says, “faith without deeds is dead.” A believer’s faith is meant to be lived out so that others may see the love of God. Here is how the last part of the three-thirds process, called Look Forward, encourages the church to live out faith:
- Plan: Now that the church has worshipped God and studied His Word, each member should have a game plan for growing closer to God. Think of practical ways to apply Scripture to daily life. Is there someone who does not know the Lord you can share the gospel with? Is there someone you are discipling you can encourage with what you learned in Scripture?
- Practice: Take the passage from the service or a story from the gospel and practice retelling it. You can also practice sharing your testimony. This will help prepare you when you share with others throughout the week.
- Pray: End your time together by praying for courage and resolve to do what God has called His children to do in His Word.
Now it is time to go and do. Take what you planned and practiced to call a friend, text a neighbor, or video chat a family member. Live out your faith by sharing what God is teaching you.
Recapping the three-thirds process
As COVID-19 continues to spread, Christians may opt for the house church model to remain equipped and encouraged during periods of quarantine and social distancing. There are many models for house churches, but the three-thirds process is one many East-West missionaries have turned to because it establishes a foundation for the habits of a disciple. The method helps church members hear from God, understand more of Him, and apply that knowledge to sharing the gospel with others.
Here are the three parts to the process:
- Look Back: Care for each other, worship God, hold each other accountable, and remind one another of your identity in God and the mission He has called you to.
- Look Up: Dive into Scripture and observe what it reveals about God and people. Discuss ways to apply this Scripture in your daily lives.
- Look Forward: Make a game plan for growing in your relationship with God, practice retelling the gospel or your testimony, and pray for the courage and boldness to live out your faith.
Christians were not meant to live in isolation.
Perhaps now is the time during this pandemic, to find a few, trusted believers to virtually meet with to be God’s church.