2 Nov by Adeline Lum CM-
Joshua Lee, founder and program director of the non-profit organization StART Society, shared on 24th October in the FGB PJ Atria Chapter on the importance of discipleship.
Having worked in corporate for more than ten years as a radio DJ, advertizing executive, public relations officer, and college lecturer to name a few, Joshua shared that every businessmen he knew had only one wish, and that is their children would proliferate their business. A divine calling as well, our God the Father wants his children to proliferate his empire and take up his legacy as well. “God has left many gaps not loopholes for us to play a part in and this is our privilege as believers,” said Joshua.
But for far too long, churches may have focused too much on teaching the gospel of salvation, forgetting about discipleship. “I am happy to be in the full gospel (businessmen fellowship) because it is not the full gospel full-stop but the full gospel is the Kingdom’s gospel, and we are the sons and daughters of the Kingdom,” said Joshua.
Imagine God telling Joshua to bring the people over the river of the Jordan and then leave them there, Israel would be in trouble! But that is the modus operandi of churches for over 50 years, with programs of one-bring-one, where evangelism is the end to it. We have filled the church with many saved people but not people who have grown in the Lord because they have not learned to walk with Him.
According to the Christian worldview, transformation of an area should happen in the vicinity of Christians. But Landa Cope from YWAM shared how journalist found out otherwise in CNN, shared Joshua. Although Texas was the most ‘Christianized’ state with many churches and Christian movements, the social ills were high. Even Nigeria, which is famous for it’s massive evangelical crusades and over 60 percent Christians, is notorious for its crimes.
“You may justify where there is darkest, we will shine brightest. Some say that because there are more churches there, there is more attack. But the problem is that we have too much message on salvation and too little message on the Kingdom of God,” Joshua said.
What does it mean by bringing the Kingdom of God? Joshua shared that when Moses was asked to lead the Israelites out of Egypt, the first thing God asked him was, “Moses, what is in your hand (Ex 4:2)?” Joshua was reminded how a financial corporation would approach StART and asked him how they should contribute. Joshua answered they should do what they do best; instead of opening a nasi lemak store, they can give a financial literacy course to the children of StART.
“Seated in this room are people who are gifted and specialized in different areas such as education, parenting, and working with business. My question is what’s in your hand? Are you doing your Father’s business? How do you do it? You do it starting with what’s in your hand.
“Jesus didn’t go to the disciples saying, ‘I will make you politicians of men.’ But he spoke to them based on their vocations, which is becoming ‘fishers of men.’ They are already in the trade,” said Joshua.
Hence, let us not start at the salvation gospel but continue to disciple the people forward by using what is in our hands! Sadly, discipleship is talked about a lot but seldom practiced. Joshua recalled how he would sit in a church council meeting to discuss which education material to choose for home fellowships.
“It’s not really the material. You can choose material A, B, and C. You can paint your Kancil ‘Ferrari-red,’ does it mean that it will be as fast as a Ferrari? The heartbeat of the church is very important. The discipleship of the church is missing, which is the engine is missing. All of us, regional pastors, zone leaders, cell group leaders, how many of us have been discipled?” said Joshua.
If we exercise the gifts that God put in our hand, we will bear much fruits (John 15:5)! The Bible said that those who know their Father would do in boldness and great exploits (Dan 11:32).
“I like for us to take a good hard look at what we have. The devil always reminds you of what sins and shortcomings you have. But the father is not interested in that but what you have in you,” said Joshua.
What is the first commission that God gave to men and women? Be fruitful and increase in number, fill the earth and subdue it (Gen 1:8). But sin came and separated God and men until Jesus came and restored the relationship. Do you know the first recorded words of Jesus in the Bible? Jesus said, “Why were you searching for me? Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house? (Luke 2:49)”
“Whatever business you’re in, its God’s business. If you walk with him as sons and daughters, you will enjoy fruition,” said Joshua who recalled how a prayer meeting in the office brought a lady to Christ! And five years down the road, this lady even became a full-time missionary.
“What’s in your hand? Prayer is in your hand and your direct connection with the Father. In the future, you can plan simple workshops that can attract people from the outside with applicable skills. We are not from this world but we are inside this world. It’s either you sow to God or sow to the devil. Bring the gospel through the way you run the businesses. This man doesn’t do it the typical way of the world yet he can succeed.
“I hope your business is your Father’s business. God has placed us on earth by walking with Him. Let’s not be like Texas and Nigeria, let’s impact the world wherever you are. All you need is to impact one person and that one person impacts the whole wide world,” said Joshua.
All of us having something to offer, be it our talents, gifts, network, financial resources, etc. Let us start with what’s in our hands.
Note: A full-fledge arts academy, StART Society reaches our to underprivileged children by helping them discover and nurture their hidden talents in fine arts and performing arts. Check out:
Pr Mark Strandjord from United States will be invited as a speaker for an evangelistic banquet at Centrepoint on 9th November. Bring your friends to hear about the gospel over a scrumptious dinner for RM30 per person.