Fearless Awards 2015 – It’s Time To Engage

Welcome you again to the 2015 Fearless Awards. At the Fearless Awards, we celebrate all those at Mavuno who have served diligently throughout the past year. None of the great things that God has accomplished here over 2015 would have been possible if not for their service.When people ask me what is the secret of Mavuno’s impact, I say that #1, it’s clear that God’s blessings have been upon this church ever since we began 10 years ago – and for that we give God all the credit. And #2, it’s because of the team of fearless influencers who have believed in and radically owned this vision.

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Whether it’s teaching our children or managing our sound and video, whether it’s hosting our visitors or praying for those in need every week, many ordinary people have given selflessly of their time and resources in order to help our generation connect with God and with purpose.  And that is why we want to take time today to say a big ‘thank you’ to all who serve for the great work you do.   

Now today I would like for us to have a family conversation. I had the privilege over the last couple of months to travel around the world. In one of the churches, as we were meeting with a team of Mizizi facilitators, one of them was so excited about our vision to plant churches across Africa that she donated a plot of land near Accra to Mavuno! Another one who is originally from China is working on a translation to Mandarin. 277 police trained in Honduras police academy that trains 400 annually! Left three of our pastors there – a passion to develop global minded leaders because of where I sense God is leading us. Nations are being transformed because of you!

But today, I wonder if there is someone sitting here and they are asking, ‘what’s my role’? Pastor M, what’s my role? I am so glad you asked! What a great question! Before I answer your question, I would like to say that my prayer is that we will always be a church that is known for welcoming people who don’t like church. And I pray we’ll always be a church that is known for training (the biblical word is discipling) those people so that they discover their purpose and become fearless influencers of their families, of their estates, or their workplaces and of their society.

IT’S TIME TO ENGAGE!  I need you to engage. Some of you are still checking out Mavuno, and have not yet engaged. Some of you are mildly engaged. Others are deeply engaged while others have dis – engaged. But I deeply believe that in order for the revolution that God wants to happen through us to take place, all of us must engage! I so am glad you asked again! What I will share with you is not new stuff, it is basic but extremely important. This church doesn’t matter if we who are in the church, are not daily becoming more like Jesus. Secondly, this church doesn’t matter if the community around us is not changing for the better because of us. For the church to matter, we all need to engage. How do we do that? The first thing is:

CONNECT small groups are the essence of the Christian experience. The Christian faith was never meant to be a Sunday church-attending ritual. It was meant to be a loving relationship with God that is experienced through a loving relationship with His people. In other words, one of the most important thing you can ever do as a follower of Jesus is be part of a small group of people who meet on a regular basis to hear from God together and to care for each other through the journey of life. This is why small groups (what we call a Life Groups) are so critical for us as a church. And this is why we want every one of us in a LG. It is because in that group then you get to be “with one another for one another”. Being in a small group is not an add–on; it is a core element of what it means to follow Jesus.  If you want to be a part of the Mavuno family, do not be satisfied with rows, Sunday music, and a nice church for your kids. You need to be a part of a Life group where you are doing life with another because this is the essence of the Christian faith.

SERVEI know many marriages that have been saved because our NDOA facilitators took time to pray for and counsel a couple on the verge of divorce or help a marriage start right. I know many people who started coming to this church because their kids came once and insisted they must return each week – thanks to the patient and loving volunteers at the MAVUNO KIDS. I know many who are walking with God because their LIFE GROUP leader faithfully kept the group together. I know many who came and accepted Christ because the VIDEO, MEDIA, SOUND and SETUP teams prepared well and we could clearly receive God’s word. Thousands have been blessed because of those who serve. These are the real heroes of Mavuno!

All the many who serve don’t do so because they’ve nothing better to do. And they don’t serve because they have their act together! They serve because even though they’re not perfect, they have encountered the love of a perfect God and they want others to encounter that same love. Interestingly, serving plays a big role in helping us become fearless influencers. It gives you kingdom tools and helps you become the type of servant leader who will be useful part of God’s kingdom wherever you go.

It’s time to ENGAGE! I want to invite every one of you who calls this their church to join Team Mavuno for 2015 and to serve, #1 because you have unique gifts, talents, passions and skills that God has given you to make you a blessing and #2 because it is how you train for fearless influence. But lastly, because this vision needs you! We will not be all that God wants us to be unless all of us find our place and begin to engage!

GIVE this is the third place I would like you to engage. Knowing what has been going around in our city, I am aware that this is not a very popular topic, but hear me out and understand why you need to engage. The thousands of people who have had their lives changed at Mavuno would never have been changed if it wasn’t for the faithful giving of this church.

We raised around 250M to purchase this property and to prepare it to become not just a place where people who don’t like church enjoy to come, but also a launching place for fearless influencers. And many of you have continued every month to give an amount towards your pledges during our Gift Weekends.  I want to sincerely apologize for not giving you a continual update on our giving. We want to start doing so regularly next year and will take some time next week to update you specifically on our development.

What Next?                                                                                                                                                                      

Many of you have already signed up to serve on one of our ministry teams. You are already part of Team Mavuno 2016. Praise God for you! May you serve His people faithfully and diligently through the year to come. As we give out the awards today, I believe they are really are a foreshadowing of a far much greater award ceremony that the bible tells us will take place when Christ returns. Jesus in his parables hinted that one day, each of us will receive a divine evaluation based on the way we lived our lives here on earth. Did we live for ourselves? Did we invest our lives as a blessing to others? And when that day comes, I pray that all of us here will hear our Father’s voice warmly speaking to us with the words, ‘well done, good and faithful servant, you have been faithful with a few things. Come now and take charge of many more’.

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