New Bible Study to Lead Conference From Easter to ACS

February 16, 2011

The California-Nevada Annual Conference congregational development team has developed a daily Bible study, "The Great 50 Days – A Mission of God's Movement in the World," to lead the Conference from Easter to Annual Conference Session this year.

The study is subtitled, "A daily guide to setting the world on fire."
The introduction to the study guide warns, "For the next 50 days you are invited to immerse yourself in the story of the church becoming a movement of grace transforming the world. What you are about to read is very dangerous, even subversive. It is the story of the power of Christ's resurrection set loose in the world through the fire of the Holy Spirit.
"It is a story that is:
  • Dangerous to systems that perpetuate crushing poverty and poor health;
  • Subversive to a world bent on violence and war;
  • Deadly to the forces that keep people lost, addicted, hopeless, oppressed, or ignorant of the fact that they are children of God."
The introduction to the study guide begins with a series of exciting possibilities. "What if, by 2020," it asks,
  1. All congregations in our Conference had a clear, simple vision and strategy for making disciples in their unique context who reach their mission fields;
  2. Our Conference culture naturally encouraged innovative ways of multiplying disciple-making movements to create new places for new people;
  3. One-third of the congregations in the Conference are starting something new that reaches new people through context-discerned models of new faith communities, and/or new expressions of current offerings;
  4. We had a new multicultural congregation that consistently engaged no fewer than 1,000 active participants each week;
  5. We had at least five existing congregations with no fewer than 1,000 active participants each week;
  6. We had at least 20 faith communities with no fewer than 500 active participants each week?
"How would we be different? How would people's lives be changed? How would our mission to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world be enhanced?
"Would these be signs that we had become a movement again?"
And it challenges, "Let's catch fire as we open ourselves to God through these daily Scripture readings. Let's pray that God would make us a movement again. It can start with a single heart igniting through a fresh encounter with Christ.
"Could that heart be yours?"
As the study is undergoing final edits, plans are underway to make it available on the Conference website for use by individuals, churches, and circuits as preparation for Annual Conference Session, June 15-18. Watch for details in the News section of the website and in the weekly Instant Connection e-newsletter.