Story of Redemption and "Reaching the Next Generation for Christ" T... from James Nored on Vimeo.
On my second recent trip to California, I met with a number of people and was able to get quite a number of ministry things done.
- North Oaks Church of Christ (Canyon Country, CA) - I preached and taught about Following Christ and His Mission, "Reaching the Next Generation for Christ," and the Story of Redemption at the North Oaks Church of Christ in Canyon Country, California.
When I was getting my Doctor of Ministry at Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, CA, a few years back, I would often stay with a minister and his wife, Ron and Sheila Sherman. Ron is now an elder at the North Oaks congregation. I stayed with him and another elder on this visit, Mike Faragher. Both were incredibly hospitable. During this trip, I also met with the worship committee North Oaks, discussing some of the disconnect in worship with today's experiential, younger, generations. (See the viral article series that I have written, Why Churches of Christ are Shrinking: A Left-Brained Fellowship in ....") They seemed to think that the discussion was helpful.
I also met with the elders and staff at North Oaks, and I was impressed with their desire to seek to reach this next generation for Christ. We are looking at doing some extended coaching and seminars together over the next twelve months.
- EPIC Church (Torrance, CA) - Over the past year or so I have been blessed to get to know Matt and Melissa Raines, and Jeff Brimberry, from EPIC church, a Kairos church plant. They actually found the Story of Redemption online and starting using it prior to us meeting. They have used it to lead people to Christ. Their daughter is starting a Story of Redemption seeker study with her friends. And Jeff is using the Story of Redemption to share Christ with his girlfriend. They are starting to use the Story of Redemption films as well as they come out, and it was exciting to hear about God working through this!
- Small Groups for the Rest of Us - I was able to drop by and attend the Kairos California co-hort, where Chris Surratt was presenting from his book, "Small Groups for the Rest of Us." It was good to see this great group of churches and ministers. There at that meeting, Scott Lambert shared how he was stepping down from Kairos to become the new Executive Director of Let's Start Talking, another great ministry. (Many blessings to Scott and Kim on this new adventure!)
- Hilltop Community Church of Christ (El Segundo) - Jon Reed is a wonderful minister who helped take a church that almost died out to a church of around 200. Jon is also a great evangelist, and on my previous trip to CA, I got to go and visit one of his "personal mission spots"--a local park where he plays volleyball. (I played volleyball that evening as well. I joked that this might have been detrimental to his Christian witness due to my limited volleyball skills!) Monica Moreland is the small groups minister at Hilltop, and she is a former missionary to the Ukraine as well. She was excited about the material, and was glad to hear about the SOR being translated into Russian. Hilltop is interested in using the Story of Redemption and the Reaching the Next Generation for Christ seminars. It looks like I will be doing some coaching and training with Jon and Hilltop.
The video above contains some testimonials from some of the California group on the Story of Redemption and the "Reaching the Next Generation for Christ" series. So glad to see people being receptive to this, and that they find it helpful for them.