The Acts 1:8 Challenge is not another program or ministry model to emulate. The goal of the Acts 1:8 Challenge is for each church to be a worldwide mission center, engaging in intentional kingdom-growing efforts in “Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and the ends of the earth.”
This idea has been around since Jesus spoke the words that are recorded in Acts 1:8. This effort to call churches to this challenge has been around for a few years. But in June, 2010, our association was asked to join with others across America to be pilot associations where the Acts 1:8 Challenge can be promoted and implemented. So, from now through June, 2011, be ready for all kinds of opportunities to see your church move toward new levels of action that will help the Christians in your congregation be missionaries here at home and to the rest of the world.
This challenge helps our churches evaluate how we are actually doing in fulfilling this important biblical directive. With the four areas of assignment in view – Jerusalem: our hometown and local association; Judea: our state; Samaria: our nation, and the ends of the earth: the world – we are ready to help evaluate how well we are engaging in eight kingdom-growing responses to Acts 1:8. These are biblical opportunities for participation in God’s work and witness, empowered by the Holy Spirit:
Preparing: empowering leadership to guide the church’s missions efforts
Learning: missions training for the entire church family
Praying: Asking God for direction and interceding for missionaries and mission fields
Giving: Increasing financial support for the association, Cooperative Program, and SBC missions causes
Going: Enabling a growing number of members to participate in short-term missions efforts.
Telling: enabling intentional, culturally relevant evangelism
Sending: encouraging members to respond to the call to vocational mission service
Multiplying: participating in church planting here and abroad.
Visit the excellent website, www.actsone8.com, to learn more about this opportunity to increase your church’s missional effectiveness. There are specific aids for smaller, midsize, and larger churches. Make the Acts 1:8 commitment, and watch what God will do!
To help us move in the right direction together as an association, we will be hosting our first Acts 1:8 Challenge Missions Celebration on Saturday, September 11 at Durham Memorial Church. This event, starting at 6 pm will feature a disaster relief missions meal, served by one of NC Baptist Men’s feeding units. As you eat you can look at missions tables set up by our churches and other ministries that will tell the stories of how God is leading us to be obedient to the Great Commission. Then, at 7:15 pm, we will have a worship celebration featuring testimonies of God’s faithfulness, reports from missions partnerships, and a message by Dr. Richard Blackaby. There is no charge to attend, but an offering will be taken to help cover the costs of this gathering. To sign up, call 704.375.1197 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, please let us know if you or your church will set up a display table to share your missions efforts.
If you would like for someone to come and talk with your church or your leadership about the Acts 1:8 Challenge, please let me know by calling MBA or email me at email@example.com.
Thank you for the privilege of serving with you in this Metrolina mission field!