John Shaw is the OPC General Secretary of Home Missions. He is a former church planter in St. Paul, MN that now (along with the Committee) oversees OPC church planting. In this role over 4 years, he brings a breadth of understanding and awareness of what is happening in OPC church planting that is both evident and helpful in this episode. You will hear specific accounts of what God is doing in our church plants, how our pastors are fostering a more intentionally outward facing approach to their neighbors, and helping their congregations do the same. John discusses numerous resources that will be a help to all Christians. This episode is the first of a multi-part podcast. It’s packed with great stuff and we couldn’t fit it into just one episode. Resources John mentions are linked below. You will get a better picture of the OPC and benefit greatly from this episode. Enjoy!
Episode ‘Table of Contents:”
0:48 Stories of our OPC church plants and encouraging things John gets to see when he travels to different church plants
4:15 How OPC church planters are getting connected to the OPC and how they are cultivating their interest in reaching people
7:17 Challenges to Reformed church planting and finding a balance between being outward toward visitors and confessionally & theologically deep for members
11:45 Discussion of several resources to help all Christians improve in their effectiveness in reaching out to friends and neighbors
15:55 Cultivating a welcoming congregation with the challenges of being a smaller congregation where quirks and eccentricities may stick out more than a larger church
23:00 Examples of pastors creating venues for reaching people
26:50 Encouragement for all members living life intentionally and treating people as created in the image of God, not targets for evangelism
Resources Mentioned & Discussed
Rosaria Butterfield: Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert
The Gospel Comes With a House Key
Thom Rainer, Becoming A Welcoming Church
The two historically standard Reformed evangelism works that John mentioned:
R.B. Kuiper, God Centered Evangelism
J.I. Packer, Evangelism & The Sovereignty of God
Outward OPC posts on asking the right questions:
1) An Unintentional Unwelcoming Welcome
2) Conversation That Opens Doors & Hearts
New Horizons, March 2017, Brad Peppo Evangelizing Skeptics
New Horizons July 2018, Matt Cotta & Pasadena OPC —page 14 of this pdf version
Outward OPC, Phil Proctor in Sterling, VA Friday Night Fellowship Outreach
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