This is blog three in a series on Reproducing Grace. First was “Reproducing Grace: A Church Plant Movement” where I unpacked the first century church planting movement as seen in the book of Acts. We saw that reproducing grace by planting churches in a particular region can be done with little or no money. Second was “Gathering for a Grace Movement” where I discussed church leaders and believers gathering together to start a Grace Movement in a particular region. I covered how to begin, plan, and launch a Grace Movement in a region.
Building on those ideas, I want to suggest that reproducing grace groups in a region can influence a culture in that region.
The Thessalonian Example
Let’s look again at the Thessalonian Church. Thessalonica was located in a pagan culture full of idol worship and pagan rituals. Those who believe the grace message abandoned idol worship in an idolatrous culture to serve the living true God (1:9). This grace group shared the message of grace in Macedonia and Achaia and became a great example for all who believed (1:7). More and more people believed the good news and abandoned their idolatry to serve God and they influenced the region with Biblical teaching and a grace-centered worldview.
We can influence the culture in our region the same way the Thessalonians did — by reproducing grace. Start one grace group and it can split like a cell and multiply.
Imitating Basic Biology
Do you remember learning about cells in high school biology class? An organism is alive. Organisms are made up of cells that split into smaller cells and multiply. One cell splits and becomes multiplied into two cells. These cells split and multiply into four cells and so on. Cells in an organism regenerate and grow naturally. A grace movement in a particular region is an organism. The grace groups are the cells of that organism. They naturally divide and reproduce.
In our churches across the country we already have many ministries designed to reach and influence particular affinity groups: children’s ministry, youth ministry, men’s ministry, women’s ministry, just to name a few.
What if we start an organism with one cell, one grace group, and it splits and multiplies into many groups of different affinities. They could split into grace groups designed for children, teens, young adults, men’s, women’s, young married couples, young families, senior adults; not to mention addiction recovery grace groups, teen mom grace groups, troubled teen grace groups, foster care support grace groups. There could also be benevolence groups feeding and clothing the homeless and those in need while sharing the message of grace.
All these groups need are resources written specifically for the affinity of the group — free grace curriculums and small group studies written so they could be easily reproduced and facilitated. Some of these resources already exist and are written by the authors of this grace blog.
Influencing Our Culture With Grace
Imagine a region saturated with all of these grace groups. Imagine the influence that would have on the entire region. It would be just like the influence that the Thessalonian grace group had on the entire region of Greece. With the grace message and a graced-centered worldview, we can impact our region with grace and influence the culture!
Original post taken from https://freedomchurchmovement.org/f/reproducing-grace-groups-can-influence-a-culture