If Christians adopted a few simple habits, the gospel would spread in surprising ways.
That’s been the experience of Michael Frost, church planter, consultant and author of several books including Surprise the World: The Five Habits of Highly Missional People. He shares the first 3 habits of missional Christ-followers; the practice of eating together, being a blessing to others and listening to the Holy Spirit.
Michael reminds us that sitting together around a table is a fundamental Christian practice and is considered as an act of worship.
“My concern is that very often Christians find themselves only ever bringing other Christians to their table.”
“The only act of worship Jesus really told us to perform was not singing and it wasn’t Bible study; I’m not suggesting that he doesn’t want us to do those things, but He didn’t tell us to do those things, what He did tell us to do was to eat and drink in His name.”
He recommends that we step outside of our comfort zone to expand our reach.
“The feast is the central to the Christian experience from the very beginning. I think American Christians by and large have got that down; we’re good at bringing people to our table. My only concern is when that it is only other Christians. In larger churches, often it’s only our own little circle of friends within the church, so what I’m suggesting is that we broaden that.”
Bless one another.
Michael charges us to be intentional and bless 3 people every week.
“I’m not asking you to add anything into your schedule, I’m not asking you to do it every Wednesday night from 7-9, I’m simply saying in which ever way it fits into your current rhythms in life, bring someone to your table or bring 3 people to your table and find 3 people that you can bless.”
Blessing other people can create a ripple effect that will spread the gospel in surprising ways. Michael encourages the entire body of Christ to participate!
“If your church started expecting everyone to bless 3 people every week with words of affirmation, a gift, kindness and eat with 3 people every week, that would start to bounce all around the church; it would bind you to each other, it would connect you to people maybe that you haven’t even talked to in your own church. It also ricochets out into the neighborhood; you start getting to be known as the most generous and most hospitable of people in your community.”
“I guarantee you that would turn your church upside down.”
Listen to the Holy Spirit.
“This is one that often raises people’s eyebrows because they can kind of get the practicalities of blessing and eating, but what does it mean to listen to the Spirit?
“We need Christians to be led by the Spirit into the world in which they live.”
As Christians, we have a powerful opportunity to surprise the world with God’s love by adopting these simple habits.
Who are you going to bless this week?
“I want you to pray every Monday, ‘Lord, who do you want me to bless and eat with this week?’ You need to be open to the prompting of the Spirit for Him to direct you to the people who need to sit across the table from you this week, who need a word of affirmation or an act of kindness in their life this week. Create space in your life where you can commune with God and you can hear His promptings.”