The Addisons are on the move!

2014 04 Steve and Michelle Addison

I have some important news to share with you.

Michelle and I took time during my recent Long Service Leave to seek God regarding our next phase of life and ministry. We set aside time to wait on God.

We spent some time celebrating what God has done over the last five years. We have come a long way in learning how to share the gospel, disciple new believers and gather them into new groups and churches. We’ve trained locally and around Australia and we now have a growing network of practitioners and trainers.

Then we prayed about our next assignment. As we prayed we became convinced that God is calling us to England for the next two years. Our goal is to repeat there what we have achieved in Australia. We’ll train broadly and identify lead practitioners who can train and mobilise others across Britain.


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Chuck Wood’s cheesy vision for San Antonio

5 Generations Chuck Wood

Chuck Wood (2nd on the left) picked up a copy of Discipleship ReRevolution by Steve Smith and Ying Kai. As he began to read, Chuck heard a voice in his heart say, “Humble yourself and do this.” Chuck had read hundreds of books on discipleship. He wasn’t about to just drop everything he knew and blindly start doing what the latest book taught. But the voice would not go away, and finally he accepted it was the Holy Spirit.

Listen in to the Movements podcast to learn how God gave Chuck a vision and a strategy for reaching his city and training others around the world.

Chuck’s website is loaded with great resources and training opportunities.


Celebrating 100 years of missional fog

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Paul Johnson asks,

Imagine you can ask any question to eighteen leading writers, thinkers, and speakers who have significantly influenced the “missional church” in American evangelical thought. 

That’s what he did on behalf of the Evangelical Missions Quarterly (subscription required).

This line in his report got my attention:

Surprisingly, only nine of the eighteen leaders identified the Great Commission and the making of disciples as the essence or heart of the mission of Christ. 

Anybody else catch the irony?

Paul’s conclusion:

It appears that the missional church movement has split into two competing factions. Those who advocate for placing the Great Commission as the mission of Jesus Christ for this age are the strongest proponents for prioritizing the making of disciples. Those who identify the mission of Jesus Christ with the overall reign of God in the world and missio Dei, do not, for the most part, promote either the Great Commission or disciple-making as a central priority to fulfill Christ’s mission.

He asks,

Where do we go from here? Well, that’s another good question to explore.

My point would be that western Christians have been exploring mission for a 100 years and still aren’t going anywhere.

Jesus as theological educator

Jesus rich ruler

Jesus chose not to found a school (even though schools existed in the ancient world) or to establish a structured curriculum leading to a degree. Further, even after their three years of education at Jesus’ side, Peter and John were still identified as ignorant and untrained, but nonetheless feared and honored and able to turn their world upside down (Acts 4).

Linda Cannell

I don’t think Jesus saw his role as “educator” as though the accumulation knowledge was sufficient to change the human heart.

Jesus made disciples who learned to follow and obey him.

How can we reshape what we call theological education so that it aligns with making and multiplying disciples who are faithful in head, heart and hands discipleship?

Keith Ferdinando has some good suggestions in the latest edition of Themelios.

[I’d like to track down the name of the artist to credit for the image above.]

UPDATE: Thanks to Peter we’ve identified the painting as Christ and the Rich Young Ruler by Heinrich Hofmann.

David Garrison talks about A Wind in the House of Islam [Podcast]

David Garrison

David Garrison

David Garrison talks about his new book, A Wind in the House of Islam.

God is drawing Muslims to faith in Jesus Christ all around the world. David’s book examines 45 Muslim movements to Christ. He helps us understand what God is doing, and shows us how to get involved in reaching the world’s 1.6 billion Muslims.

“A Wind in the House of Islam” (David Garrison)

David also mentions:

“Camel How Muslims Are Coming to Faith in Christ!” (Kevin Greeson)

“Any-3: Anyone, Anywhere, Anytime — Win Muslims to Christ Now!” (Mike Shipman)


From Nashville to the world

In the next ten years, 187 US cities will be majority-minority — the majority of residents being minority peoples from Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Latin America.

These guys are crazy enough to believe that God can begin a movement in Nashville that will spread nationally and globally.

History is made by people who don’t know enough to know it can’t be done.

What Jesus Started awarded Outreach Resource of the Year

Forget the Oscars….

What Jesus Started: Joining the Movement, Changing the World was named the Outreach Resource of the Year in the Church Health category.

Todd Engstrom, executive pastor of the Austin Stone Community Church and director of church planting for the Austin Stone Institute in Austin, Texas, selected the resources for this category.

“When it comes to church health, the single greatest indicator is healthy, replicating disciples of Jesus,” said Engstrom. “Addison thoroughly establishes a framework for discipleship by analyzing the ministry methods of Jesus, the early disciples and Paul, while interweaving several real-life stories of multiplying disciples and churches.

What Jesus Started is an excellent, practical resource to help your church take significant steps toward becoming an effective movement of disciple-making disciples, which is what a healthy church is all about. The application of the ideas contained in this resource, empowered by the Holy Spirit and the Word of God, would do wonders for cultivating a vibrant community of Christ-followers!”

North Korea to release Australian missionary

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North Korea says it will release and deport a 75-year-old Australian missionary detained since last month for allegedly distributing religious materials.

John Short was arrested after leaving “Bible tracts’’ in a Buddhist temple in the capital Pyongyang during a tour, the North’s state-run KCNA news agency said.

They are also holding US citizen Kenneth Bae, described by a North Korean court as a militant Christian evangelist.

He was arrested in November 2012 and sentenced to 15 years’ hard labour on charges of seeking to topple the government.

YouTube training on disciple making movements

Our good friends at e3 partners have a YouTube channel dedicated to training in multiplying disciples and churches.

Some great practitioners share their insights.

Here’s Gary Stump on reaching the people in your world…


Subscribe to the channel.

Get your copy of the March-April issue of Mission Frontiers

Mission Frontiers is has become the leading magazine for great content on disciple-making and church planting movements.

This month’s issue is a must read……

The March-April issue of Mission Frontiers is now available online. In this issue we are looking at how God uses field workers to pioneer movements among unreached peoples around the world. God is using their expertise in the U.S. in pursuit of similar movements among unreached peoples. These leaders have coined the term 4X4 Movement Starts to describe a minimum goal for movements starts where 4 lineages of disciple-makers are developing 4 more generations of disciples. Read on to find out more. (Full Issue)

 Kindle Download - Read it on any device that uses mobi files (Kindle, Kindle App for iPad/ iPhone/ Mac/ Android)

Featured Articles

Introducing… 4X4 Movement Starts

Ministries aim to grow wide (a regular audience of many members), but not deep (many generations). Ministries urge: “come to our meeting,” “listen to our message,” “read our materials,” or “visit our site.” Ministries ask members to invite others rather than training them to reproduce. Ministries tend to overextend leaders while leaving disciples dependent and underdeveloped. Movements on the other hand, equip members to obey and teach what they receive, often with little interaction two or more generations away.  (full article)

No Longer “Business as usual”

As a family we have witnessed door to door for decades, using whatever model was favored by our current local church. They were always encouraged, and the people to whose homes we went seemed more responsive with someone from out of town. And as we shared the gospel, we joyfully experienced GOD! But after we, with others, helped add 1,200 people to one church, these people eventually wandered away because there was no structure for discipleship and leadership development to equip the fruit of these evangelistic outreaches for multiplication. Now, in the tools that God has given us, we have a reproducing entry strategy, a reproducing gospel which new believers share right away, reproducing discipleship, reproducing gatherings of new believers, and multiplication of leaders. (full article)

No Longer “Church as usual”

I started my ministry as a pastor in 1990 in the usual way of “attractional” church. The traditional idea of “doing church” was to develop a program on Sundays that would draw those who were far from God to hear the Gospel and connect with the Lord and His people. But after more than 20 years doing it this way, something seemed very ineffective to me with this approach. I’ve said for a long time, “I’m way too old to play church!” Furthermore, I realized that in my 22 years as a pastor I had encouraged, challenged, rebuked, motivated, inspired and even scolded Christians toward disciple-making. But I had never taught them how to make a disciple. it had never occurred to me that my first responsibility as a pastor in “equipping the saints for the work of ministry” (Eph 4:11-13 ESV) was to teach them how to make disciples who were abet to make disciples. (2 Tim 2:2) (full article)

No Longer “Discipleship as usual”

By 2010, I had been discipling others for 30 years and risen to national level leadership with the Navigators. Then a speaker introduced me to the book, Movements that Change the World. I was more than curious. This launched me on a three-year study of what God is doing around the world. The final book on my reading list was T4T: A Discipleship Re-revolution by Steve Smith and Ying Kai. As I started reading a voice in my head said, “Humble yourself and do this.” By now I had read hundreds of books on discipleship methods, and I wasn’t about to blindly start doing new stuff. But the Holy Spirit persisted in speaking to me, and I determined to obey. Never have I seen God do so much so quickly, nor to such depth. (full article)

Growing U.S. Movements to the Lost and the Unreached

We started our house church in October 2012. We just called it “porch church” since we started by meeting on our porch. We started with eight folks but only have seven now. We’ve intentionally not added new members but seek to start new churches with new folks. As of December 2013, we have multiple streams to the 5th generation or beyond and well over a dozen more to the 4th generation. All told there are about 200 downstream churches in the USA and 162 overseas, including several among previously unengaged people groups. The total number of new professions of faith is now over 10,500. Our vision is to make it the norm for followers of Christ to become multiplying disciple-makers. (full article)

Fostering Multigenerational Movements by Equipping Believer-Priests

I moved from traditional church ministry to pursuing a generational church movement in January 2005. A desire to reach the lost and an honest look at how the first-century world was discipled in reproducing churches inspired us to “Re-en-ACT” our approach to the Great Commission. As a result we’ve had approximately 1000 generational groups and churches started in our people group. We live outside our people group, but I have personally led two to faith who have started generational church streams. Also, a volunteer team I was with led another person to faith who started a large generational stream. As a result, my primary role shifted from evangelism to training. Discipling these new believers as partner-priests, rather than students, has fostered generational growth. (full article)

Disciples Unleashed

In Honduras, Kenya, Guatemala, Israel, Congo, Pakistan, and many other nations, the Body of Christ is stirring in a mighty way, hungry for God’s work. Pastors and church leaders all over the world are hearing the call to return to “the Jesus model” of making disciples. Applying the tools Jesus modeled for us is resulting to impact the world. (full article)

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