If you asked the average passerby on the street, they probably wouldn’t say that Christianity and partying go hand in hand. In fact, they might express the opposite. But in order to effectively reach those we lead and capture the heart of the next generation, the Church needs to embrace Jesus’ example that, well, sometimes it takes a party to let people know they’re invited.
Today on The Pod, we look at ministry from a mindset that celebrates the people in our communities—even the ones who don’t look like or think like us—and invites people to experience hospitable environments within our churches. First, we hear from Reggie Joiner, who shares stories straight from his neighborhood and redefines what it looks like to party. Then we’re joined by Terry A. Smith, pastor of The Life Christian Church. He shares ideas from his new book, The Hospitable Leader, that reveal ways for ministry leaders to gain influence and maximize the potential of those they lead.
Welcome to Episode 75 of The Think Orange Podcast!
How to win two free tickets to Orange Conference 2019 (4:56)
Reggie tells the story of his next-door neighbor Tom (6:35)
Going to parties together changes relationships (13:00)
Reggie’s definition of the word party: Any effort to celebrate, serve, or enjoy each other in a way that adds value to life (13:55)
Jesus’ example that sometimes it takes a party (14:25)
Jesus used a party to explain the kingdom of God and demonstrate that we’re all invited (18:02)
What would happen if you started acting like everyone was invited? (19:43)
Dave and Ashley interview Terry A. Smith (21:15)
The idea behind Terry’s book The Hospitable Leader (22:24)
The growth of diversity at The Life Christian Church (25:59)
Jesus and early church leaders accomplished their mission within the context of hospitable settings (29:18)
The practical focus of hospitable leaders (31:55):
- Physical environment
- Spiritual environment
- Emotional environment
- Attitudinal environment
- Communicative environment
The five welcomes of hospitable leadership (35:45):
Every empty seat at the table is a lost opportunity (42:12)
In family ministry, we get to throw a party for kids every week (44:14)
Hospitable leadership is a precursor to every other form of leadership—including servant leadership (45:32)
We need to move from hostility to hospitality (47:37)
Dave’s final thoughts (53:56)
People, Places & Helpful Resources
Reggie is the founder of The reThink Group, a nonprofit organization providing resources and training to help churches maximize their influence on the spiritual growth of the next generation. He is also one of the founding pastors of North Point Community Church in Alpharetta, Georgia. In his role as the executive director of family ministry, Reggie led a team to develop the concepts of ministry for preschoolers, children, students, and married adults over the course of his 11 years with the church. He is the author of Think Orange and co-author of “Seven Practices of Effective Ministries.” His latest books include “A Different Kind of Leader,” “It’s Just A Phase So Don’t Miss It,” “Creating a Lead Small Culture,” and “Parenting Beyond Your Capacity.” Reggie and his wife, Debbie, live in Cumming, Georgia, and have four grown children. Learn more about Reggie at http://www.whatisorange.org/.
TERRY A. SMITH
Terry A. Smith has served as Lead Pastor of The Life Christian Church for twenty-seven years. TLCC – a non-denominational faith community with campuses in West Orange and Paramus, New Jersey – is known for its vibrant diversity and robust leadership culture with people from more than 132 distinct communities in the New York City Metro area participating in the life of the church. Terry is a co-founder of The New York City Leadership Center. A gifted communicator, Terry speaks in a variety of venues nationally and internationally and is the author of Live Ten: Jump-Start the Best Version of Your Life (Thomas Nelson) and The Hospitable Leader: Create Environments Where People and Dreams Flourish (Bethany House – Release Date: 10.2.18). He holds a Bachelor of Science in Organizational Management (Church Studies) and Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership. Terry has been married to Sharon, for 35 years, and they have three adult children: Sumerr, Caleb, and Christian. Learn more about Terry at https://www.terryasmith.com/.
Quotes from This Episode
Ideas to Influence the Next Generation
The following is an excerpt from Reggie Joiner’s ebook Sometimes It Takes a Party.
You can get your copy today at starttheparty.org.
I believe you are surrounded by a generation of party starters.
They don’t want you to tell them what to believe.
They want you to give them something to do.
They want you to put them in charge of something.
They want you to help them launch something.
This generation doesn’t want another church service with three songs and a sermon. They want a life-changing, risk-taking adventure.
This generation doesn’t want more programs.
They want to experience what God can do through them.
You know what this generation wants?
They want what Jesus promised in John 10:10 when He said, “I have come that you might have life—and have it to the full.”
a bigger God.
They want life the way God intended.
They don’t want a religion that is defined by the exclusive attitude of the Pharisees. They want a relationship characterized by the inclusive nature of Jesus.
They want a party.
© 2017 The reThink Group
Conversation Starters For Your Church
Describe a time you experienced hospitality in your own life. What happened?
On a scale of 1 to 10, how would a first time guest rate their experience in regard to hospitality at your church? What are three or four reasons you picked the number you did?
What is a dream I could help unlock for someone else/a group in the next six months?
When he’s not working as a pastor at North Point Ministries in Atlanta, Dave is usually making his family cross their arms, roll their eyes, and tap their feet while he takes “just one more quick photo” on family outings. You’ll also often find him up to his neck in “Jewish stuff” as he researches the cultural context of Jesus for his daily Instagram devotions. Learn more about Dave at daveadamson.tv.
Ashley serves as the Director of Middle School Strategy at Orange and the USA Director of Carry 117. She has worked with students in public education, athletic and ministry settings for the last 12 years. She is most passionate about resourcing the local church, communicating on stage, developing leaders, working with students and world missions. In her downtime, you’ll find her watching Friends, cheering on the Cleveland Cavaliers, traveling, reading, or on one of her Fairytale Friday Adventures.
Join Us Next Week
Thank you for listening to the Think Orange Podcast.
We hope you’ll join us for episode 76: Creating a Volunteer-Led Marriage Ministry, with Todd Graham and Ted Lowe. More importantly, we hope that when you think next generation, you think Orange.